The Australian government has signed contracts with Navantia of Spain to build Australia’s two replacement replenishment ships.
CAPTION: ESPS Cantabria (foreground) in company with HMAS Success off Sydney after the Spanish tanker joined the Royal Australian Navy in 2013. Photo by Leading Seaman Peter Thompson
Defence Minister Marise Payne said Australia’s current supply ship HMAS Success would reach its end-of-life in 2021 and needed to be replaced as a matter of priority.
“As part of the $640 million contract with Navantia more than $130 million will go to Australian industry,” Minister Payne said.
“Local industry activity will include combat and communication systems integration, integrated logistics support, and elements of the onboard cranes.
“In addition, an initial $250 million, five-year sustainment contract also signed with Navantia will be undertaken in Australia.
“Australian shipyards simply do not have the capacity to complete the replenishment vessels in the required time and a local build would delay the [other projects].”
The minister’s statement went on and on about other projects and how great they, she and the government (now in election mode) were for jobs and the economy, but nothing else directly relevant to the defence of Australia.
. . .