SUSSEX Police and Surrey Police have been given the go-ahead to work together in three areas.
Following the approval of both police authorities, plans will now be finalised for the forces to jointly provide major crime investigation, forensic and scientific services, and firearms.
Both authorities have said the decision is not a precursor to a merger and reflected on similar successful arrangements in nearby areas such as Kent and Essex and Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire.
Sussex Police said collaboration will create more capacity and resilience in areas of reactive policing, such as firearms incidents and murder investigations.
It will also allow the forces to align operating procedures so they can work together during larger incidents.
Sussex Chief Constable Martin Richards said: “Working closely with our neighbours in Surrey provides an excellent opportunity to ensure top-class policing can be provided across both forces in these vital areas.
“Changes won’t happen overnight and we now enter a detailed period of consultation and planning.”