Australia to boost domestic capability to support military aircraft

13 November 2020 (Last Updated November 13th, 2020 09:09)

The Australian Government has unveiled a new roadmap to optimise sovereign aerospace platform deeper maintenance and structural integrity capability.

Australia to boost domestic capability to support military aircraft
Australian Army (A38-017) Eurocopter Tiger ARH. Credit: Bidgee.

The Australian Government has unveiled a new roadmap to optimise sovereign aerospace platform deeper maintenance and structural integrity capability.

The Sovereign Industrial Capability Priority Implementation Plan seeks to develop a defence industrial base in the country that is ‘robust, resilient and internationally competitive’.

It provides information on how the government would work with the Australian defence industry to build and develop the country’s sovereign industrial capability.

The Australian Defence Force (ADF) operates a diverse fleet of rotary and fixed-wing aircraft, as well as large remotely crewed air vehicles.

These platforms are used in various roles such as air combat, mobility, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, electronic warfare, and air training.

This priority plan focuses on the Australian industry to provide cost-effective deeper maintenance services to support the operational availability of these aerospace platforms to meet ADF’s needs. This priority does not include procurement of aircraft.

Australian Defence Industry Minister Melissa Price said the plan will benefit Australian small and medium-sized businesses who are already participating in the defence sector, as well as those who aim to join it.

Price said: “This plan sets out how the new opportunities for Australian defence industry to get into the aerospace sector are literally sky-high.

“Our military aircraft are critical to the Australian Defence Force’s ability to achieve its strategic objectives.

“We need Australian industry to keep them operating at a high standard, as well as to ensure they remain safe and fit for purpose.

“This plan provides clarity and direction to Australian companies to more closely align investment with defence objectives, and to make the most of the government’s $270bn investment in defence capability.”

The aerospace priorities plan follows the issuance of the first three plans.

The first two plans for Combat Clothing Survivability and Signature Reduction Technologies and the Munitions and Small Arms Research, Design, Development and Manufacture were released in December last year.

In August, the government announced the Land Combat and Protected Vehicles Plan.

In September, Australia launched a grants programme that seeks to develop a skilled workforce in the defence industry sector.