26 Apr 12. Laos and Burma: Establishing Representation. In a Written Statement (26 Apr 12) the Foreign Secretary announced the Government’s intention to reopen the British Embassy in Vientiane, Laos and to establish a British Interests Office in Naypyitaw, Burma. The Foreign Secretary noted that Laos “remains the only ASEAN country where the UK is not currently represented.”. The Office in Naypyitaw, Burma’s administrative capital, will strengthen the work of the Embassy in Rangoon.
Comment: The British Embassy in Laos was closed in 1985. A British Trade Office was then opened but was subsequently closed in 2004 and all work was transferred to Bangkok.
The EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy visited Burma/Myanmar (28 to 30 Apr 12) to inaugurate the Office of the European Union to Myanmar. EU sanctions against the country have been suspended with the exception of the arms embargo.
(Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 12/17, 30 Apr 12)
27 Apr 12. Royal Navy: New Headquarters. The RN confirmed (27 Apr 12) the First Sea Lord’s “flag now flies from his new headquarters at HMS Excellent on Whale Island” in Portsmouth.
Comments: Changes to headquarter arrangements follow initiatives introduced by the 2010 Strategic Defence and Security Review. Although the First Sea Lord’s command now resides in Portsmouth “the responsibilities of the appointment will also continue to demand that he works from London”.(Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 12/17, 30 Apr 12)
24 Apr 12. Rolls-Royce is to open a new supply chain office in Guaymas, Sonora, Mexico. This new office will strengthen collaboration with key suppliers in a region that is widely recognized as the leading aerospace industry cluster in Mexico. (Source: BUSINESS WIRE)
24 Apr 12. Citizant has expanded its lease to include an additional 2,500 square feet at its headquarters office in Chantilly, Va. The expanded space will accommodate 15 new employees in business development and program delivery. (Source: Yahoo!/BUSINESS WIRE)
26 Apr 12. Japan and the United States will unveil on April 27 a new deal on the relocation of a military base and thousands of U.S. troops on Okinawa, a report said ahead of the prime minister’s visit to Washington.
About 9,000 Marines will be moved out of Okinawa prefecture, with about 4,000 to be sent to Guam, Kyodo news agency reported April 26, quoting Japanese government officials. The two governments hoped to seal an agreement in time for Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda’s visit to Washington on April 23. (Source: Defense News)
25 Apr 12. Ashchurch to close? Sources close to BATTLESPACE suggest that the huge MoD Ashchurch site is due for closure and redevelopment. The site contains thousands of MoD items, including, the reported 50 brand new warrior APCs, a point routinely denied by the MoD! The source also suggest that the huge Wilton Land Command site slated for sale to raise funds to build the Andover facility has stalled due to the fact that the land reverts back to the Pembroke family if not required by the MoD!
25 Apr 12. BAE Systems has completed construction of the company’s new state-of-the-art manufacturing center in Austin, Texas, the company announced at a ribbon cutting event. The new facility will produce an array of technologies for the global defense, aerospace, and security
company’s Electronic Systems sector. (Source: Yahoo!/BUSINESS WIRE)
16 Apr 12. Saudi Arabia denies Swedish arms factory claim. Saudi Arabia has denied it had an agreement with Sweden to develop a weapons factory, a claim that has already resulted in the resignation of the Swedish defence minister. A statement released via the Saudi Press Agency on 14 April said: “The Ministry of Defence stressed that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has not signed in the past any agreement with the Kingdom of Sweden for implementing a project of this nature, nor is there any project in such a fiel