Fifth run around the Collins submarine mulberry bush

At least one senior defence force official, the Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Tim Barrett, will no doubt have a better reason than most to break out some serious Christmas cheer in the coming weeks. After a decade of trouble with sustainability of the Collins class submarine fleet, Barrett was told in a recent study that there was a reasonable chance that by the middle of next … [Read more...]

Defence-industry policy searching for tinkers, tailors and candle-stick makers

There is an interesting element to the Deloitte report reviewing the approach to Australian Industry Participation (AIP) in regard to the rollout of Phase 2 of Project LAND 400. When the government announced in April 2016 that it was deferring for three months the down-select of Phase 2 tenderers, the decision was greeted with some scepticism. Surely one of the bidders had run … [Read more...]

Balancing risk and reward in the quest for the best capability

When we talk about seeking to acquire the ‘best’ capability, how much risk is too much risk? The ADF’s E-7A Wedgetail airborne early warning and control platform, for instance, is said to be one of the most advanced air battlespace management capabilities in the world, and the envy of other countries. But this sort of developmental acquisition would not provide an appropriate … [Read more...]

Long march begins towards an Australian military-industrial complex

Not since Bronwyn Bishop was appointed Minister for Defence Industry, Science and Personnel in 1996 has local industry been so excited about the prospects of carving out a share of the billions of defence dollars planned to be spent over the next decade as the Coalition implements its new Defence Integrated Investment Program (DIIP). Assuming the published investment plan will … [Read more...]

Pyne embarks on mission to energise defence industry, and to deliver Turnbull’s economic plan

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has turned to Christopher Pyne to deliver the defence industry plank of the re-elected Coalition government’s economic plan that is intended to drive growth in advanced manufacturing and technology nationwide. The announcement of a dedicated minister is seen in some quarters as recognition of the importance of the defence industry, and a means … [Read more...]