Manufacturing News

Industry welcomes Government JSF decision

Ai Group and Lockheed Martin Australia have welcomed the Government’s announcement to acquire the first batch of new generation Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) aircraft.

“It will create in Australia additional high-skilled jobs, boost leading-edge aerospace technology opportunities and enhance our defence export performance,” Ai Group Chief Executive, Heather Ridout, said.

The F-35 JSF is said to be the best aircraft to meet the air combat capability needs of the Australian Defence Force.

Consistent with the commitment given in the Defence White Paper earlier this year, the Government’s decision to acquire around 100 aircraft by 2021 will contribute significantly to regional security, while offering scope to meet alliance responsibilities elsewhere.

Paul Johnson, Chief Executive of Lockheed Martin Australia welcomed the news that the Australian Government had formally committed to the Joing Strike Fighter program.

“The JSF program continues to move forward as more aircraft move onto the production line and are delivered to the flight line… We remain committed to Australia’s requirements and are confident we will meet the Government’s request for the delivery of the initial tranche of 14 F-35 Lightning IIs in the time frame nominated,” Mr Johnson said.

Twenty-five Australian companies have so far won more than $200 million worth of work during the development and early production phase of the JSF program. The announcement provides the opportunity to increase this level of work under Team Australia.

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