France's Reaction To The AUKUS Submarine Deal: Was It A Surprise?

France has been blindsided by Australia's decision to buy French submarines. This leaves France with many uncertainties about their future

France's Reaction To The AUKUS Submarine Deal: Was It A Surprise?

With the recent news of Australia’s acquisition of French submarines, France has found itself in a state of outrage. They were not only blindsided by the deal, but they also feel as though they were betrayed. The French Navy has been around for centuries and is one of the most powerful forces in Europe and the world. However, following this decision to sell, they will now be at risk for any enemies that surround them. This leaves France with many uncertainties about their future. Here are some thoughts on what the purchase means for France and what it could mean for other countries as well.

France's Reaction to the AUKUS Submarine Deal

France was not pleased with Australia’s decision to acquire new subs from France. According to AFP, the president of the French senate has even expressed concerns that this will have repercussions for military relations between the two countries. He said, “I cannot but regret that the Australians have chosen France as a supplier for submarines, in particular when the international situation is rather complicated.” He went on to express concern about China. While there have been similar situations between France and China in the past, the submarines purchased by Australia may actually increase tension between the two nations. He also stated, “For the moment, I would rather Australia buys from Germany,” he said.

How this Japan deal could affect other countries

This AUKUS deal will not only benefit Australia and France, but also Japan and the United States. Japan has been engaged in a program to purchase French submarines for many years now. This includes the ASN1 La Fayette submarine. This program has made many concessions to Japan in terms of quality and price. The deal to purchase the Soryu class submarine began in the early 2000s, and there has been only two submarines commissioned to date. This brings to mind two questions: “How are the Americans benefiting from the AUKUS submarine purchase?” and “How will this affect other countries interested in purchasing French submarines?”. The answer to the first question is that the Americans are not benefiting from the AUKUS submarine purchase.

What France should do now

France needs to step up their game. At a time when the French Navy is struggling, with many ships and ships yet to be repaired, and a shipyard which is facing low profitability, they could’ve chosen a slightly lesser or at least slightly inferior submarine as opposed to a far more advanced design, they instead decided to give away such an impressive prize. This isn’t just a question of money, although they did spend a lot of money, it’s a question of confidence. France needs to find the strength to stand up to their competitors, who will use it as a point of reference for their designs and tactics. How France can overcome the loss The submarines France is now expected to sell have tremendous capabilities that far outclass the one they were planning to. This shouldn’t be a problem.


The Defense Minister of France, Florence Parly, stated that they would review the purchase following the government announcement of the deal. This has given them ample time to examine the implications and the best decision for them. The acceptance of the deal has also given many of the opposition a chance to speak out and protest the potential sale. However, France has not given in to the complaints and has also not given in to the accusations. French Defense Minister Florence Parly said that "the French navy was not consulted in the discussions with Australia on the A$50 billion ($38 billion) deal and asked for a meeting." This shows that France is still maintaining their view of an independent country.