Govt releases detailed defence plan

The Federal Government has released the nation’s first Defence Industrial Capability Plan, outlining Australia’s long-term vision and objectives for the defence industry.

The plan also details how the Government and defence will partner with industry to achieve that vision.

The Chamber of Commerce and Industry WA welcomed the plan as an important avenue for WA to develop its defence industry capabilities.

CCIWA Chief Executive Officer Chris Rodwell said WA is a global leader in shipbuilding and defence, with our sophisticated defence supply chain boasting more than 180 companies which excel in all areas of construction, including design, build, maintenance, upgrades and exports.

“The plan gives WA businesses clarity about the diverse opportunities that the Australian defence industry presents, and the certainty it needs to invest in boosting their defence capability,” Mr Rodwell said.

“There are exciting prospects for WA in the areas of continuous shipbuilding and maintenance, aerospace, cyber and information security, as well as surveillance and intelligence data collection.

“I encourage all WA businesses, and in particular small-to-medium enterprises, to look at how they can play a role in supporting the delivery of the Government’s Integrated Investment Program.”

Launching the plan, Minister for Defence Industry Christopher Pyne acknowledged the importance of a stronger, more resilient and internationally competitive defence industry, with the Government already investing $200 billion in defence capability over the next decade through the Integrated Investment Program.

“Importantly, the plan makes clear that to be considered an Australian Defence company, having an ABN and a shopfront is no longer enough – we want to see Australian leadership, an Australian board, and an Australian workforce value-adding right here at home,” Mr Pyne said.

“This plan highlights a range of opportunities for Australia’s defence industry over the next decade and reinforces the sustained partnership we need to position our defence industry to meet our defence capability needs.”

A list of sovereign industrial capability priorities critical to achieving the Australian Defence Force’s operational mission, and to the development of Australia’s future force over the next few years was released:

  • Collins Class Submarine maintenance and technology upgrade
  • continuous shipbuilding program (including rolling submarine acquisition)
  • land combat vehicle and technology upgrade
  • enhanced active and passive phased array radar capability
  • combat clothing survivability and signature reduction technologies
  • advanced signal processing capability in electronic warfare, cyber and information security, and signature management technologies and operations
  • surveillance and intelligence data collection, analysis, dissemination and complex systems integration
  • test, evaluation, certification and systems assurance
  • munitions and small arms research, design, development and manufacture
  • aerospace platform deep maintenance.

A grants program with funding of up to $17 million per year will begin in the second half of this year.

Implementation of the plan will be supported by australian industrial strategies for each of the six Integrated Investment Program capability streams and implementation plans for each sovereign industrial capability priority from mid-next year.

The Defence Industrial Capability Plan can be downloaded at: www.defence.gov.au/SPI/Industry/CapabilityPlan.

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