Britain and France are planning to spend over $2 billion in order to plan and develop a FCAS or Future Combat Air System. This Future Combat Air System could replace the current-generation European fighters. The current-generation European fighters have a time frame of 2030. The agreement between Britain and France was made in March 3, 2016.
France’s Dassault Aviation is in charge of leading Britain’s development of the Taranis unmanned combat air vehicle.
The last agreement was during a meet with UK Prime Minister David Cameron and French President Francois Hollande at the defense summit in Amiens, France. During the meet, the two parties agreed to contribute a total of over $1 billion to the Future Combat Air System.
Not only is Britain and France working together, but some of the companies residing in the countries as well. This includes Thales, Dassault, and Snecma in France, as well as Rolls-Royce, BAE Systems, and Finmeccanica Airborne and space Systems in the UK.
Michael Fallon, British Defense Secretary, talks about the Future Combat Air System during a statement that was released during the summit.
“The Future Combat Air System project will give the UK and France the most advanced vehicle of its kind in Europe, securing high-end engineering jobs and expertise in both countries with full-scale development of prototypes starting in 2017.”
Dassault CEO and Charman Eric Trappier chimes in and talks about how he feels about the project. According to Ain Online, Trappier was “delighted at the two countries’ shared intention to pursue cooperation in military aviation, and particularly to launch a new phase in 2017 with the ‘scale 1’ development of a UCAS operational demonstrator.”