Hunter Class Frigate Program to have more engagement with Australian industry

The Australian Government is examining more opportunities for Australia’s local industry in the Hunter Class Frigate Program with three feasibility studies for Australian industry to participate in the build phase of the first three frigates.

Prime contractor ASC Shipbuilding, a subsidiary of BAE Systems Australia, has engaged Queensland-based Craig International Ballistics to investigate an Australian solution for ship bridge windows and armour protection.

Adelaide-based REDARC Defence Systems has also been engaged to explore an Australian solution to LED lighting.

A third Australian company, West Australian based propeller manufacturer Veem is conducting a study to examine security requirements for local propeller manufacture in Australia.

Minister for Defence, Linda Reynolds said the feasibility studies demonstrates the Morrison Government’s commitment to maximising Australian Industry Content in the construction of Defence’s new anti-submarine warfare frigates.

“We are on track to begin the prototyping phase of the Hunter Class Program at the end of this year, which is why it’s vital we continue to form new partnerships with Australian industry as we look ahead to the build phase,” Reynolds said.

“These feasibility studies announced today build on a feasibility study already underway into locally manufactured main reduction gearboxes for future Hunter batches.”

Minister for Defence Industry Melissa Price said Australian industry is being assessed for new opportunities in the design, manufacture, testing and installation of equipment on the Hunter Class frigates.

“These feasibility studies ensure Australian companies are given every chance to contribute not only to the Hunter Class build, but to our continuous Naval Shipbuilding endeavor more broadly,” Price said.

ASC Shipbuilding has committed to achieving 58 per cent Australian Industry Content over the life of the acquisition contract.