Tokyo: A defense and security pact between Japan and Australia dubbed the Reciprocal Access Agreement (RAA) is set to go into effect on August 13 after the sides exchanged diplomatic notes on Tuesday, the Japanese Foreign Ministry said.
Canberra and Tokyo signed the RAA in January 2022, hailed by then-Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison as “a landmark treaty which opens a new chapter for advanced defence and security cooperation.” The deal will allow the Australian and Japanese militaries to hold joint drills and maneuvers, including air-to-air refueling drills, as well as station troops in each other’s territories, among other matters.
“On August 8, 2023, diplomatic notes for the entry into force of the ‘Agreement between Japan and Australia on Facilitation of Mutual Access and Cooperation between the Self-Defense Forces of Japan and the Australian Defense Force (‘Japan-Australia Reciprocal Access Agreement’, or ‘Japan-Australia RAA’)’ (signed on January 6, 2022) were exchanged in Tokyo and Canberra. Following this exchange, this Agreement will enter into force on August 13, 2023,” the ministry said in a statement.
Japanese Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi told a press conference that the treaty will allow for streamlined cooperation between the Australian and Japanese forces and improve interoperability by establishing a framework for the conduct of such cooperation.