New defence contract highlights success of Global Supply Chain program


South Australian company Airspeed has signed a contract with Thales Australia for the design and manufacture of key components for Next Generation Sonar Systems.

Announcing the news today, Minister for Defence Industry, Christopher Pyne said the contract brought the total value of contracts achieved under the Global Supply Chain program to over $1 billion.

Thales has a strong track record of supporting innovative, high tech Australian businesses with over 80 per cent  of the contracts awarded by Thales through the Global Supply Chain program over the past five years for high value work.

Minister Pyne congratulated Airspeed, which specialises in the design and build of composite materials for aerospace, maritime and energy-related projects.

“Airspeed’s success in delivering on this contract will embed the company in Thales’s supply chain and provide access to future export opportunities around the world,” he  said.

Minister Pyne said the achievement showed that the Global Supply Chain program continues to support Australia’s defence industry to grow and export internationally.

The GSC program,  launched by the Department of Defence in 2007, involves working with multinational defence companies, or ‘primes’, to identify opportunities for Australian companies within their international supply chains.

“The Global Supply Chain Program along with other export initiatives the government has announced this year will give Australian defence companies the support they need to grow, invest and deliver defence capability.

“Australian small and medium businesses are often the beneficiaries of supply chain contracts. This was evident with the recent announcement of the Rheinmetall Combat Reconnaissance Vehicles with over 40 companies from across Australia contracted for the construction of the fleet.”

“The launch of the Australian Defence Export Office and the appointment of David Johnston as Australian Defence Exports Advocate also boosts the support available for Australian businesses to achieve export success,” the minister said.

Minister Pyne opened the Australian Defence Export office in Canberra on Monday, which forms part of the government’s new defence export system announced in January 2018.

Based in the Department of Defence, the Australian Defence Export Office works hand-in-hand with the Centre for Defence Industry Capability to support the export efforts of Australian industry.