The maritime domain is one of the main environments of global competition. NATO maritime operations are focusing on strengthening defence and deterrence from and through the sea. Maritime aircraft can operate independently or as an integral part of a task force in support of a maritime campaign, but can also play a significant role in the joint air campaign. On the other side, Air Forces can extend their reach and increase the flexibility of naval surface, subsurface, and aviation assets, in the control of the maritime domain.
For these synergistic effects, interoperability and integration of Air Force and Navy capabilities are essential. Among all military instruments of modern naval power, the aircraft carrier and its embarked air wing continue to have a pivotal role. It is an operationally outstanding asset, capable of being effectively integrated into a combined multinational campaign and delivering multi-domain effects.