Raytheon Australia has been awarded an $84.5m (A$111m) sustainment contract by the Australian Department of Defence for the national advanced surface to air missile system (NASAMS).

The system has been jointly developed by Raytheon and Kongsberg and entered service with the Australian Army in 2023.

The latest contract will provide the initial five years of sustainment, with an option to extend the contract to the full 20 years.

It will support the new short-range ground-based air defence (GAD) capability under the Land 19 Phase 7B programme.

Australian Defence Industry Minister Melissa Price said the new contract was part of the Australian Government’s ten-year $270bn boost to the defence industry.

Meanwhile, Raytheon announced the official opening of the new ‘Centre for Joint Integration’ in Mawson Lakes, South Australia (SA).

The new centre was opened by Australia Prime Minister Scott Morrison.

Australia Defence Minister Peter Dutton said that the multi-million-dollar investment will generate hundreds of new defence industry jobs.

Dutton said: “The Centre for Joint Integration will contribute to the development of some of Australia’s most important defence capabilities.

“It will serve as Raytheon’s main site for the manufacture, assembly and systems integration in Australia and will play a pivotal role in supporting and sustaining the new short-range ground-based air defence capability.”

The new centre will also serve as the primary support facility for the new air defence capability over its 20-year life.

The Australian firm expects to provide ongoing employment opportunity for some 35 staff in support of the short-range GBAD capability.