Over 160 Australian companies, research and development and educational institutions gathered in Brisbane yesterday to be updated by key Future Submarine Program (FSP) representatives.
Attendees were updated on the program's progress to date, future development plans and potential engagement opportunities.
The event was a joint briefing involving the Department of Defence and the two prime contractors of the program – DCNS, the Platform System Integrator (PSI), and Lockheed Martin Australia, the Combat System Integrator (CSI).
In Queensland, the DCNS figures show:
- 46 requests for information have been sent to 14 companies;
- 12 companies have completed the DCNS supplier pre-qualification questionnaire; and
- Six companies have already undergone questionnaire validation audits, which is the next step in the process of becoming eligible for the DCNS supply chain.
DCNS Australia's chief executive Brent Clark said the briefing was another example of how DCNS intends to maximise the Australian industry's involvement in the FSP.
"The purpose of today’s briefing is to provide an update on the Future Submarine Program and how we want to maximise Australian involvement, for example, through technology transfer and collaboration," said Clark.
"I think it is important for Australian industry to understand that this is a national project and everyone has the opportunity to contribute. Attending these joint briefings with the Department of Defence and Lockheed Martin is the best way to learn about the opportunities this program has to offer."
Lockheed Martin Australia said it is keen to hear from Queensland industry suppliers, to support their plan to team with Australian companies to provide the engineering capacity needed to support the program.
"To date, we have a number of Queensland suppliers registered with us for the Future Submarine Program and we are keen to hear from industry across a range of fields including systems integration, cyber security and hardware engineering," said Vince Di Pietro, chief executive of Lockheed Martin Australia.
"Our approach to supporting sustainable industry development is to invest and grow the capabilities of our local supplier partners to support our global supply chains, providing opportunities for technology transfer, innovation, local skilled jobs and sustainable business growth."
Minister for Defence Industry Christopher Pyne welcomed the fourth Future Submarine Program industry information sessions and said Australian industry involvement in the program was vitally important to the construction and sustainment of the submarine fleet into the future, and would create job opportunities across Australia.
"These types of high-level engagements with Defence industry again demonstrate the government’s commitment to maximising Australian industry involvement in the Future Submarine Program," said Minister Pyne.
The minister said attendees stated industry days remain beneficial, providing good insights into the progress of the Future Submarine Program and the opportunities for Australian industry to participate.
"Successful industry days have already been conducted in Adelaide, Sydney and Melbourne, which have attracted more than 1,000 attendees from Australian companies, research and development institutions and educational organisations," he said.
The Future Submarine industry briefings will continue around the nation in 2017, with the next briefing scheduled for 7 June 2017 in Perth. Further briefings will follow in Hobart and Darwin.