The Minister for Defence Industry Christopher Pyne has announced changes to the process companies undertake when responding to defence tenders, with a strong emphasis on maximising Australian industry involvement.
Minister Pyne said the changes will strengthen the requirement for Australian involvement in Defence projects.
"We are changing the process companies undergo when responding to tenders for defence equipment," Minister Pyne said.
"The Australian Industry Capability Plan Template has been strengthened in line with government’s defence industry policy of maximising Australian industry involvement in meeting Australia’s defence capability goals, creating thousands of long-term jobs across the country and economic growth.
"This new template demands more than ever before from defence companies, driving them to outline how and where they will involve Australian industry, before we will even consider their bid."
The changes have been made to explicitly address:
- the tenderer’s strategy for maximising Australian industry involvement in the project and enduring Australian industry capability benefit beyond the work period;
- maximised inclusion and evidence of having positively engaged Australian small to medium enterprises and Indigenous business enterprises;
- proposed investment in innovation, and collaborative research and development efforts in Australia;
- establishing, transitioning or enhancing skills, knowledge, systems, technology and infrastructure within Australian industry; and
- identification and promotion of Australian defence export opportunities and as a contributor to the global supply chain.
Minister Pyne said this new template has already been used across some of the future shipbuilding projects and will now be used across any appropriate procurements.
"We have already used the new template in our Offshore Patrol Vessel and Future Frigate requests for tender and are now rolling it out across all relevant materiel procurements," Minister Pyne said.
"This reflects the seriousness with which this government takes ensuring we are maximising Australian industry involvement in our Defence capability and the thousands of jobs that will flow from this commitment.
"It is also a clear signal to overseas large contractors wishing to do business in Australia that they need to take Australian defence industry capability seriously."
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The move comes after much debate around how much Australian industry will contribute to the $50 billion Future Submarine Project.
While the previous CEO of DCNS Sean Costello put forward a 90 per cent Australian industry contribution figure, there are fears it could fall well below that to just 60 per cent.
More information about defence tendering and contracts can be found here.