The U.S. has kicked off talks with Britain and Australia on inviting Japan to collaborate on defense technology under the AUKUS security partnership, according to a media report, with an announcement possible as soon as next month.

Japan’s involvement in the partnership would be limited to specific projects, excluding nuclear-powered submarines under the first pillar of the trilateral agreement, with the aim of boosting multilateral cooperation toward deterring China, the Nikkei business daily reported Saturday.

The security pact is built on two pillars: AUKUS Pillar 1 focuses on helping Australia acquire conventionally armed, nuclear-powered submarines and AUKUS Pillar 2 focuses on the development and sharing of advanced tech with warfighting capabilities, such as artificial intelligence, quantum computing, undersea drones, hypersonic missiles and electronic warfare technologies.