From the moment it was established, the Defence Industry portfolio had a crystal clear focus.
It was to deliver world-class capability for our Defence Force, export our Aussie ingenuity abroad, broaden the horizons of Australia’s small and medium businesses – and create thousands of Australian jobs in the process.
In June 2019 I was honoured to be asked to take the reins to ensure our Defence programs were delivering for the Australian defence industry.
It has been an extremely rewarding experience and has made me very proud knowing my primary responsibility is to not only deliver for Australian industry, but to ensure the men and women of the Australian Defence Force have what they need to keep Australians safe.
Soon after taking on the role, I embarked on what I called my “100-Day Review”.
This was about identifying the areas in the Defence Industry portfolio that our Government needed to address to deliver on our long-term plan to create a truly sovereign defence industry.
Most in industry would know that my unwavering focus has been to deliver greater support for small business, both in Defence and in industry.
We must also recognise, though, that we need international prime contractors in our defence industry and must develop partnerships with them to deliver major Defence programs.
This is so the men and women of the Australian Defence Force, who are entrusted to protect Australia and Australians, have the best capability on offer. This cannot be compromised.
We also need to strike the right balance to ensure these large companies comply with the rules set by our Government and deliver on contractual obligations to help us deliver a stronger defence industry.
This means transferring intellectual property from overseas to Australia, investing in the Australian economy, creating new Australian jobs, opening long-term opportunities for Australia’s small and medium businesses and developing new Aussie-know-how and know-why for our workforce.
Over the decade ahead and through the Morrison Government’s ambitious $270 billion investment in Defence capability, we will achieve a truly sovereign defence industry.
This has all culminated in a new ‘five pillars’ approach to supporting defence industry:
- A new and enhanced Australian Industry Capability (AIC) contractual framework
- An independent AIC Plan Audit Program
- Commonwealth Procurement Rules (CPR) guidelines update
- Centre for Defence Industry Capability (CDIC) Review and its implementation
- Australian Standard for Defence Contracting (ASDEFCON) Review
These five pillars encapsulate my vision and approach to changing the way we support and do business with defence industry.
The first pillar, the creation of the new and enhanced AIC contractual framework, involves strengthening core AIC commitments and significantly expanding AIC provisions in contracts.
The second pillar, the establishment of the Independent AIC Plan Audit Program, is to provide guaranteed protections for the Australian taxpayer and our small and medium businesses in defence industry.
The audit program is a targeted program and the tool we will use to ensure major Defence companies are meeting their AIC obligations.
The third pillar was the significant update to the CPR guidelines aimed at better supporting Australian businesses.
For procurements above $4 million, the guidelines now define AIC and sovereign capability as an economic benefit to be assessed as part of the value for money consideration in the CPRs.
Defence has started to roll out more effective guidance to its tender evaluators with respect to AIC.
It will amend its procurement templates to strengthen the application of our Government’s AIC policy and will develop AIC-specific training for Defence tender evaluators.
The fourth pillar, the review of the CDIC, will now turn to ensuring we implement its recommendations to provide more tailored and enhanced support to Australian businesses.
Given the challenges thrown up by the COVID-19 pandemic, it is more important than ever that we continue to develop new ways to support the Australian defence industry.
After almost four years in operation, the CDIC has shown its value in helping more small and medium sized businesses access opportunities in the defence sector.
Implementing the review’s recommendations will ensure that the CDIC continues to connect Defence and small business in a simpler, more cost-effective and more outcomes-oriented way.
The fifth and final pillar is the overhaul and review into ASDEFCON.
I will oversee this review, which will aim to simplify and streamline contracting and subcontracting templates and remove unnecessary complexities that put unnecessary pressures on Australian businesses.
The Terms of Reference to remove the barriers within ASDEFCON, and the consultation process, will be finalised and released in November.
These five pillars are the culmination of a substantial change to how we do business with industry.
We are placing small business front and centre of Defence decision-making.
We are going to provide enhanced and more tailored support to Australian businesses.
And we will cut red-tape, processing times and costs to businesses who contract with Defence.
I am here to support Australian businesses, deliver a sovereign defence industry and ensure the men and women of the ADF have what they need to keep Australians safe.
Our Government will continue to deliver on this commitment.
Strengthening how Defence does business with Australian industry
This report arrives at a critical juncture in the current economic climate. Our manufacturers responded to the COVID-19 pandemic with distinction. Now, we rely on Australian manufacturing to be one of the country’s heavy lifters in leading the economy out of recession and on to the road toward a solid recovery with greater capability.
Australia can transition from being a lucky country to a smart country. We know that when Australian manufacturers ‘add value’ to a product or service it is greatly respected and becomes more globally competitive. Australian manufacturing carries a strong reputation internationally, it is a broad capability that cuts across all sectors, and now is the time to seize the momentum that is underway.
AMGC is enormously proud of its 2,500+ members’ efforts. This report reflects the achievements of successful manufacturers and we are pleased to share many of the winning formulas with you.
This report complements previous AMGC insights into what can make Australian manufacturing more competitive. It follows:
ADA-Vic is delighted to announce Adam Evans as its new Alliances Manager for the Victorian Defence Alliances.
On behalf of ADA-Vic, which delivers this important program for the State Government, Chairman, Bryan O’Connor confirmed the appointment. He celebrated the significant contribution by outgoing Alliances Manager, Charlotte Morris, whose efforts have developed the most integrated and well delivered industry alliance program in the region.
“Victoria maintains an extremely dynamic and effective defence industry base. This program, thanks mostly to the efforts of Charlotte, has showcased outstanding Victorian SMEs and provided an excellent framework to support SMEs in Defence supply chains. Now, as Victoria prepares for the economic recovery from COVID-19, the VDA activity becomes even more crucial,” Bryan O’Connor remarked.
“Adam is a respected and well-known Victorian entrepreneur, he has led a number of digital and collaboration projects with VDA previously. He is well prepared to deliver the service required during these challenging times, supported by ADA-Vic. During the dedicated and deliberate handover period, Charlotte and Adam will work collaboratively with stakeholders to help position the VDA membership for ongoing success.” said Sean Farrell, the CEO of ADA-Vic.
Adam is an active participant in state and national discussions on the value of the dynamic SME base and is a highly effective leader. He will build on Charlotte's legacy and help the Victorian Government, ADA Victoria and the VDA membership continue to deliver outstanding service to defence industry.
“Victorian companies have a long and proud history of collaborating to support the national Defence effort in hard times. As we start the recovery phase of our COVID-19 response, we have an incredible opportunity to unlock this potential again. Through the VDA program we can find and connect this potential, and with ADA-Vic mentoring, support and advocacy, Victoria can deliver world leading technologies from right here in our backyard,” said Adam Evans.
Charlotte will continue to provide mentoring support to Adam and the VDA as she moves on to continue to support Defence and defence industry by growing the supply chain’s capability and capacity through the DMTC’s Industry Capability Development Program. Adam has commenced the handover and will assume responsibilities on the 1st October 2020.
A copy of the announcement is available to download at the bottom.
In partnership with Marketing Entourage, the Australian Defence Export Office (ADEO) has developed a five week online pitch training course to support Australian defence industry companies looking to better promote their capabilities.
Download the brochure at the bottom of this post.
The program is specifically designed to improve the chances of export success for Australian defence industry companies engaging with foreign military and supply chain companies such as international primes. The training is delivered through a series of webinars, online modules and one-to-one pitch practice sessions.
Companies will be provided with the opportunity to have their pitch reviewed by people in highly experienced Defence and prime acquisition.
The online pitch training course is fully subsidised by the ADEO.
We hope to help all companies in the Australian defence industry, although companies who have who have recently participated in an industry delegation with TDA will receive priority for the first cohorts.
There will be several cohorts across the financial year, commencing 7 September 2020, with around 20-30 companies in each.
We anticipate that it will take around 2-4 hours per week to complete the course, and businesses can have as many people as they see fit complete it together under one registration.
ASC is Australia’s leading sovereign capability on submarine platforms, including the management of local and international supply chains.
ASC built and now sustains the Royal Australian Navy’s fleet of six Collins Class Submarines and is an integral part of Australia’s maritime defence strategy and national security framework.
ASC employs more than 1000 employees across its sites.
ASC’s capability in specialised submarine construction and maintenance is located at two key sites in Osborne, South Australia and Henderson, Western Australia.
ASC’s submarine platform capability is aligned with that of the Royal Australian Navy. ASC undertakes the platform integration of the major systems and identifies and implements design improvements through a combination of in-country engineering know-how, advanced manufacturing and an extensive local and global supply chain.
As a leader in the defence industry, ASC prides itself on the quality of services and products, its proven innovation, integrity and delivery.
ASC is seeking suppliers, including Small to Medium Enterprises, to work to continue to deliver world benchmark capability. ASC is committed to a sovereign supply chain capability and to partnering with Overseas Equipment Manufacturers to achieve this.
Suppliers interested in participating in programs at ASC are requested to respond to the ASC Expressions of Interest on the ICN portal. As ASC seeks to engage with industry on specific work requirements, suppliers with compatible capabilities will be contacted.
Australian businesses interested in supporting ASC to deliver and sustain sovereign capability on submarine platforms are invited to register their interest with the link HERE.
BAE Systems Australia is encouraging Australian businesses who believe they can add value to the BAE
supply chain to join their Global Access Program.
In response to the Australian Government’s Global Supply Chain initiative, BAE Systems Australia established the Global Access Program (GAP) in 2012. Through their team embedded across their international business units, GAP creates export opportunities for Australian companies within the supply chain of BAE Systems group and partner organisations.
The GAP team engages with program managers and procurement professionals across BAE Systems’ global supply chain to find opportunities for Australian suppliers to support a diverse range of products and services in the:
- electronic domains
To register your interest in being a part of the Global Access Program, register HERE.
To learn more about the Global Access Program, visit their website HERE.
To learn more about the Global Supply Chain Program visit the website HERE.
Commonwealth Procurement Rules - Updated
In order to support domestic economic growth and support Australia's burgeoning defence industrial base, the Commonwealth update to the CPR guidelines includes a number of policy additions designed to foster stronger ties between industry and the government.
Defence Industry Minister Melissa Price explained the government's objectives and rationale with the updated CPR guidelines, telling Defence Connect, "These are important changes aimed at forging new opportunities for Australia’s terrific defence industries.
26 Aug 2020
The Prime Minister, Ministers for Defence & Defence Industry
The Morrison Government has announced a $1 billion investment package to boost Australia’s defence industry and support thousands of jobs across the country.
The package is directed towards nationwide projects and jobs across Australia including:
Increasing the employment of ADF Reservists who have lost their civilian income, with an allocation of up to an extra 210,000 days, and the targeted recruitment of an additional 500 ADF Reservists;
A $300 million national estate works program that will focus on regional areas (including bushfire affected regions), such as Jervis Bay & Eden, RAAF Bases East Sale, Pearce, Wagga and Amberley, the Albury Wodonga Military Area and Blamey Barracks;
Bringing forward around $190 million of investment in approved infrastructure projects in the Northern Territory;
The Prime Minister:
We estimate this package will support around 4,000 jobs across Australia and will help many small and medium sized businesses in the defence-industry supply chain.
“Like much of the economy, our local defence industry is doing it tough because of COVID-19. This is especially so for small and medium sized businesses, that are critical to jobs,” Prime Minister Morrison said.
Supporting our defence industry is all part of our JobMaker plan – especially high-paying, high-skilled jobs that ensure we are supporting a robust, resilient and internationally competitive defence industry. We want to build our sovereign industrial capabilities and Australian workforce to keep our people safe. Support including:
- Increasing employment opportunities for current and former ADF personnel and their families;
- Accelerating the sustainment of ADF platforms and capabilities, including the upgrade of Bushmaster protected mobility vehicles, modernisation of ADF uniforms;
- and additional C-27J maintenance, which will engage ex-Qantas and Virgin technicians;
- Increased funding for Defence innovation, industry grants, skilling and micro credentialing and cyber training for Defence industry;
- and Accelerating important ADF capability development projects, targeting key manufacturing, construction and high-tech sectors.
The Minister for Defence:
Supporting Australian defence industry is crucial to the economy’s recovery.
“We will also support our ADF members and families, particularly any Reservists who are doing it tough because of COVID-19”, Minister for Defence, Senator the Hon Linda Reynolds CSC said.
“Already we’ve fast-tracked a range of capability, infrastructure, skilling and workforce initiatives over the next two years. This includes rolling out a number of Defence estate works tenders as part of Defence’s economic stimulus initiative package, that will run over the 2020-21 and 2021-22 financial years. “We’re getting on with the job of delivering critical capability outcomes to Army, Air Force and Navy, as well as continuing to support our personnel, including ADF Reserve members”, Minister Reynolds said.
The announcement was made at Canberra-based company, DATAPOD (Australia), which has been awarded a two-year, $20 million contract.
The Australian owned company will provide Defence with portable, containerised data systems which can be rapidly deployed by sea, air or road. By bringing forward this acquisition, we will help to protect up to 27 direct and up to 80 supply chain jobs.
“Over $11 billion has already been provided in early payment for invoices and work to improve or sustain industry capacity for the delivery of critical supplies."
Defence will retain a great level of agility to phase and adjust expenditure of the initiatives to ensure they are affordable and remain suitable over the next two years.
The Minister for Defence Industry
It’s now more important than ever to back Australian businesses and create more Australian jobs.
"We want to ensure defence industry continues to provide vital supply chains to develop and maintain defence capabilities, as we look at opportunities to accelerate projects across Australia”, Minister Price said.
“These projects will support and grow the 70,000-strong workforce in defence industry supply chains and those benefiting from our investment in defence. We are committed to supporting small and medium sized enterprises across Australian defence industry, with programs that will support regional areas, including bushfire affected communities.”
Further details of individual initiatives will be approved and announced shortly. Further information regarding Defence’s response to COVID-19 in supporting defence industry can be accessed here