Construction begins on Australia’s third Arafura class OPV

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Construction has commenced on the third Offshore Patrol Vessel (OPV), part of the Government’s $90 billion Continuous Naval Shipbuilding Program which aims to improve upon the capability of the Royal Australian Navy.

The vessel will be the third of twelve Arafura class OPVs, and the first to be built at the Civmec shipyard in Henderson, Western Australia. The first two vessels are already under construction by Primer Contractor Luerssen Australia and ASC in Adelaide, with the remaining ten vessels to be constructed by Luerssen and Civmec at Henderson.

Defence Minister Linda Reynolds said the Government’s landmark naval shipbuilding program that will keep Australia safe and deliver jobs for generations to come.

“This Government’s investment in Australia’s naval shipbuilding program demonstrates our commitment to strong border protection over greater distances than is currently possible, and our commitment in the local economy and creating more jobs for Australian workers,” Minister Reynolds said.

“Today’s milestone reinforces the OPV program is on schedule to deliver the capability for the Royal Australian Navy when the first ship commences service in 2022.

Defence Industry Minister Melissa Price added: “The Arafura program is creating jobs across the supply-chain, and I have heard first-hand from over 100 Aussie businesses about how they are benefiting from being an essential part of construction,” Minister Price said.

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“I congratulate Luerssen, Civmec and their entire teams for exceeding their commitment to Australian Industry Capability which is having substantial positive flow-on effects right across Australia, particularly during this difficult time as we all manage COVID-19.”

Image credit: www.navy.gov.au

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