Victoria, South Australia battle for army vehicle tender

Image: Department of Defence

South Australia is fighting to remain the frontrunner location for the federal government’s $5 billion army vehicle tender.

Victorian federal government ministers have lobbied federal defence minister Christopher Pyne for the 225 vehicles instead to be manufactured in Geelong under the Land 400 project.

South Australian premier Jay Weatherill has pledged millions of dollars to attract the winning bidder, saying the state’s industry is also currently responsible for the heavy grade maintenance of all the Army’s current fleets of armoured fighting vehicles.

Geelong’s claim for the tender includes defence land near Avalon airport, testing facilities in neighbouring Anglesea, and a solid manufacturing human capital base in Melbourne and Geelong can all be drawn from, The Australian reported.

Two suppliers — Rheinmetall and BAE Systems —were short-listed in July last year to acquire and support the next generation of armoured fighting vehicles.