Japan is set to enhance its defence technology collaboration with Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States through its participation in the AUKUS pact's second pillar.

America's ambassador to Tokyo, Rahm Emanuel, says Japan would be the inaugural additional Pillar II partner in AUKUS, highlighting a significant step in defence cooperation among these nations.

The AUKUS pact, named after the three original member countries - Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States - aims to deepen military and technological ties to ensure a stable and secure Indo-Pacific region. 

Under Pillar I of AUKUS, Australia is set to acquire conventionally armed, nuclear-powered submarines. The timeline for this acquisition is in doubt. 

Pillar II of the AUKUS agreement focuses on the collaborative development and sharing of advanced defence technologies across a range of fields, including quantum technology, hypersonic missiles, and artificial intelligence. 

The United States sees Japan's forthcoming participation as a move to leverage each nation's strengths in fostering an integrated defence technological base.

During a visit by Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida to Washington, where he is scheduled to meet with US President Joe Biden and engage in a trilateral summit with Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr, an official announcement regarding Japan's participation is expected.

The inclusion of Japan in AUKUS Pillar II is anticipated to involve cooperation in numerous domains such as advanced robotics, cyber initiatives, and anti-submarine warfare, enhancing the collective defence capabilities of the partnership.

The AUKUS Defence Ministers' Joint Statement this week underscored the progress made in delivering not only Australia's conventionally armed, nuclear-powered submarine capability but also in advancing the partnership's broader objectives.