Australia releases plans to enhance sovereign defence industrial base

18 December 2019 (Last Updated December 18th, 2019 10:30)

The Australian Government has released its first two implementation plans for the country’s sovereign industrial capability priorities.

The Australian Government has released its first two implementation plans for the country’s sovereign industrial capability priorities.

Through the plans, the Australian Department of Defence (DoD) intends to increase the investment made by domestic small businesses in the defence sector.

Australia aims to develop an internationally competitive defence industrial base in the country to support the needs of troops and boost exports.

Ten initial sovereign industrial capability priorities were framed in support of the ambition.

The DoD was tasked with creating implementation plans for each of these priorities.

The plans provide details about industrial capabilities and outlines how the government would work with the defence industry to achieve those priorities.

One of the two priorities focuses on research, design, development and manufacturing of munitions and small arms while the other involves combat clothing survivability and signature reduction technologies.

Australia Defence Industry Minister Melissa Price said: “They provide a useful roadmap to help current and aspiring defence industry businesses understand the capability priorities of the Australian Defence Force, now and into the future.

“They also include detailed information to guide companies already involved in, or looking to contribute to our record A$200bn ($137.63bn) build-up of defence capability.

“Giving small business the tools and support they need to be involved in our defence industry, and grow their businesses to the point they’re ready to enter global markets is my number one priority.”

The key critical industrial capabilities for munitions and small arms are precision specialist machining, weapon system integration, energetic materiel manufacturing, test, evaluation, technologies for combat training, and load, assemble and pack capability.

The capabilities listed for the other priority are advanced materials, ability to develop and integrate advanced materials into the combat equipment worn by the forces, as well as signature reduction technologies.