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France Defense Minister Le Drian and UK´s P. Hammond strengthen Defense Cooperation in Farnborough.


By  ESN Associate Director Alejandro Ronard Alem .-  Prior to his departure to Africa to coordinate the first phase of Operation Barkhane,  the Minister of Defence of France Mr. Jean-Ives Le Drian participated in the Farnborough Aeroshow (UK), by signing important agreements with the British Foreign Secretary (previously Secretary of Defence) Rt.Hon.Philip Hammond.

Six months after the meetings of Brize Norton (UK) and the Agreements  signed between the two countries in 2010, known as the “Lancaster House Treaty”, these new agreements signed in Farnborough constitute another key step in the military-industrial cooperation between the UK and France.

While the Lancaster House Summit in 2010 and the UK-France Summit of February 2012 certified in the operational level the set of components of the future French-Anglo Combined  Expeditionary Force, the  Farnborough Agreements are the result “of a political will and a technical feat,” said the two ministers at the end of this meeting.

As part of the deal signed on July 15th at Farnborough, the UK and France agreed a £120 million feasibility phase with 6 industry partners for the joint development of unmanned combat air vehicle concepts and technologies.

On the subject, France’s Minister of Defence Jean-Yves Le Drian said that in the next two years the agreements allow the Directorate General of Armaments of France to work together with teams of the British Ministry of Defense, and also allows industrial cooperation under the direction of French Dassault Aviation with the British BAE Systems, in the realization of future  Franco-British Drone fighter to compete with the Americans. This program called Future Combat Air System (FCAS) was endowed with a budget of 150 million euros. Minister Le Drian also said:

“The arrangement related to the future combat air system is a historical opportunity for France and the United Kingdom to shape and sustain in the long-term a strong innovative and sovereign combat aircraft industry.

With continuation of development of cruise missile SCALP / Storm Shadow, after signature of the FASGW(H)/ANL contract previously this year, the 2 nations demonstrated their commitment to sustain the cross-frontier complex weapons industry through interdependence for missile sub-systems and secure significant efficiencies on future programmes.”

In the welcome speech, the British Minister Philip Hammond said that this would be his last public act as Secretary of Defense, as Hammond was later on appointed as head of the Foreign Office, since William Hague resigned recently. After marking the ideological differences with Le Drian (Socialist), the British Minister (Conservative) said however that the friendship established between them allowed to work with the same objective; which is to advance the strategic level of ​​sophisticated European Aviation Combat Technology. Hammond added that both shared the same view as to the need to combat international terrorism. On behalf of the British Government, the former Defense Secretary, and now recently appointed as Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond, said:

“The UK and France are committed to delivering effective military capabilities underpinned by cutting-edge technology, developed by strong and capable defence industries.

This relationship is essential to how we will operate in the future, by ensuring we can deal with the global defence and security challenges we and our allies may face.”



As previously said, the Farnborough Meeting  signed a renewal agreement for the SCALP cruise missile program (Storm Shadow). This agreement marks a further step in the integration of missile subsidiary.

After 25 years into the generation of the SCALP missile, the Franco-British cooperation in this field will take a significant step this time with the MBDA industrial group.




The missile developed from the MBDA SCALP EG, will be used to arm the Rafale combat aircraft, also the new multi-mission frigates (FREMM). Each frigate will be equipped with 16 missiles stored in vertical launchers. Another version of these missiles will be installed in nuclear submarines (SNA), like the French Barracuda starting from 2017.

This new generation of airborne SCALP cruise missiles, and those aboard warships, help maintain safe & discreet distance within international waters, as is the case of the frigates and Nuclear submarines, and will be especially useful on missions of destruction of infrastructure of high strategic value to the enemy.

With a length of 6.5 meters and a weight of 1.4 tons of which 500 kilos are military cargo, the SCALP Naval (MdeCM) can fly at 800 km / hour and hit difficult ground targetss. The missile is autonomous, its wings deployed after launch. In flight the missile can be rearranged by a radio altimeter system and a GPS system that allows you to achieve low altitudes. The ship equipped with this type of missile will have a power of considerable destruction.

France bought 200 SCALP rockets for its naval force, of which 150 are for the first Frigates (FREMM) and 50 for nuclear attack submarines next generation Barracuda type.

Add as technical information:  the propulsion apparatus is a simple turbojet TR50.

Regarding engineering, the  MBDA group has called Thales Avionics for the system for inertial unit and GPS receiver.

MBDA has called Thales Communications for the radio altimeter and Microturbo for turbo reactor; while SELEX (UK) will work with the infrared sensor.

SCALP EG missiles were used in Libya, with a financial cost of 850,000 euros each.

Unlike other missiles used to lower costs such as AZSM and guided GBU bombs, the SCALP missile is accuracy, precision and power of truly effective destruction. No endangering the Rafale aircraft used.

Europe Security News.- French Secretary of Defense Jean-Yves Le Drian with our Journalist and GSS Country Director in France Mr. Alejandro Ronard Alem, before their departure to England. from Air Force Base Villacoublay outside Paris.

Europe Security News.- French Secretary of Defense Jean-Yves Le Drian with our  Associate ESN Director in France Mr. Alejandro Ronard Alem, before their departure to England. from Air Force Base Villacoublay outside Paris.

As it is usual for the french Minister , the displacement of Secretary Jean-Yves Le Drian to Farnborouhg-town (located in Hampshire County in southern England 50 kms from Charing Cross central London) started early in the Air Force Base Villacoublay , outside Paris.

Given the importance of these agreements, Minister Le Drian´s official delegation were joined with members of defense committees of the French parliament, members of his ministerial cabinet and five journalists within which I find myself (that is Mr. Alejandro Ronard Alem), with the delegation of a total of 15 people.