The NSW Legislative Council’s standing committee on state development heard from key defence industry personnel yesterday, as part of the state government’s plans to capitalise on growth within the industry.
The committee heard from representatives from the NSW Department of Industry, the ACT government, the Department of Defence, SMEs, primes and research organisations.
Witnesses raised many important issues facing the defence industry, including government regulations, competition between the states and the STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) industry in Australia.
The committee also discussed some of its recently completed projects as well as upcoming developments, including its expansion of Albatross Aviation Technology Park in the Shoalhaven area and global defence leader Northrop Grumman's plans to build a $50 million 'centre of excellence’ at the new Badgerys Creek airport in western Sydney.
Chair of the state development committee Greg Pearce said that "to help support defence and generate greater investment and innovation in the state, it is important to consider how to incentivise and grow the defence industry in New South Wales".
Pearce said the the government is looking to enhance the state's capabilities across the defence industry, which they believe are already advanced.
"New South Wales is a leader in advanced manufacturing, cyber security, aerospace, information and communication technology and many other areas directly relevant to the needs of Defence," Pearce said.
"The committee will look at ways to further encourage defence industry innovation, research and education, and workforce development. We will also consider how to maximise the economic benefits of locating Defence Force bases and defence industry in the regions, as well as ways to enhance collaboration between the NSW government and Commonwealth agencies."