Australia unveils new defense export strategy

The Australian federal government has unveiled a new defense export strategy aimed at turning Australia into a major defense exporter.

The document, unveiled by defense industry minister Christopher Pyne on Monday, sets out the policy and strategy to make Australia one of the top ten global defense exporters within the next decade.

The new strategy includes several new initiatives and investments, such as a new Australian Defence Export Office which will work with Austrade and the Centre for Defence Industry Capability.

A $3.8 billion Defence Export Facility administered by Efic, Australia’s export credit agency will help Australian companies get the finance they need to underpin the sales of their equipment overseas.

The announcement was welcomed by Australian shipbuilder and exporter Austal.

“The Australian Government and Austal have a long history of working together on export deals and EFIC has assisted us on a number of our international sales,” Austal CEO, David Singleton said.

“With this latest announcement, the Government has shown it recognises the Australian defence industry cannot rely on domestic orders alone; to grow we must be competitive in the international market,” Singleton added.

“There is no reason our defence sector cannot be one of these world leading industries, but the key lies in both continued policy support and a focus on Australian control of locally developed technology.

“Some examples of this approach leading to exports include SAAB Australia with the 9LV combat system, CEA with their Phase Array Radar and Austal with the Littoral Combat Ship and the Expeditionary Fast Transport Vessels.”