In support of this requirement, General Dynamics Land Systems–Australia has committed to creating an AFV Centre of Excellence in support of its LAND 400 Phase 3 tender.
This is closely based on the existing model established for the UK’s AJAX program and will – through the establishment of local manufacturing, integration and test, supply chain management, software development, systems integration and research and development – create in excess of 1,000 direct jobs in Australia, including across a broad spectrum of Australian suppliers.
Kevin Connell, vice president and general manager of General Dynamics Land Systems–Australia and Asia-Pacific, welcomed the announcement, saying, "General Dynamics recognises the importance that the Commonwealth of Australia has placed on Australian subsidiaries of large multinational companies providing autonomous, sovereign capabilities, whilst leveraging the strengths of their parent companies, for important Australian Defence Force equipment programs."
General Dynamics Land Systems–Australia, General Dynamics Mediaware and Hawker Pacific are all Australian companies, owned by General Dynamics Corporation, with significant operations in Australia currently employing more than 600 people.
"With our plans for increasing the General Dynamics Land Systems presence in Australia supporting the major AFV programs, we will further develop our capability and capacity to manage the elements of sovereign industrial capability that are required," Connell added.
"Through our AFV Centre of Excellence, General Dynamics Land Systems–Australia will support the Commonwealth’s sovereign industrial capability requirements for designing, developing, manufacturing and integrating new systems and equipment in Australia, teaming with local companies, including small-and-medium-sized businesses, to deliver an indigenous capability to maintain a lethal, relevant and effective AFV capability for the decades ahead."
General Dynamics Corporation has a long and proud history of supporting the Australian Defence Force. General Dynamics’ business units, including land systems, ordnance and tactical systems, European land systems, electric boat, bath iron works, mission systems, information systems, Gulfstream and jet aviation, have all had a recent presence in Australia and supported local industry, and several of these business units are expanding their footprint in Australia on the back of increased commercial and defence business.
These businesses have supported a wealth of major Australian defence projects, including ABRAMS main battle tanks, ASLAV armoured reconnaissance vehicles, air warfare destroyer ships, Collins Class submarines, and aircraft supply and sustainment.