Defence has announced the signing of a new agreement with Thales Australia for the continued management and operation of Australia’s munition factories in Benalla (Victoria) and Mulwala (NSW).
Defence Minister Linda Reynolds said the $1.1 billion agreement would help secure more than 650 manufacturing jobs for another decade.
“It’s vital that we continue to enhance the readiness of the ADF and ensure we have the necessary sovereign depth for sustaining key capability and materiel such as the surety of supply of munitions,” Minister Reynolds continued.
“This agreement with Thales Australia will continue to maintain a safe and compliant operation, and increase our domestic capacity to manufacture key munitions in support of ADF operations.”
“Mulwala and its sister facility in Benalla are the home of munitions manufacturing in Australia, generating vital job opportunities in regional New South Wales and Victoria.”
“This new agreement not only reinforces the 20-year strong partnership between Defence and Thales Australia, but also provides job certainty for more than 650 highly-skilled workers at these factories.”
Defence Industry Minister Melissa Price said the new agreement underpins the renewed strategy of multi-tenancy at the Benalla and Mulwala factories and ensures access and support to other companies, particularly small to medium enterprises for munitions manufacturing.
“We’ve developed and implemented a plan to grow munitions and small arms capability in Australia, as one of our Sovereign Industrial Capability Priorities,” Minister Price added.
“It’s about identifying critical capabilities for the ADF, strengthening our defence industry, and creating new opportunities.”
“Thales Australia has an excellent track record of working with local small businesses and I have no doubt they’ll continue to utilise the skills and ingenuity of small businesses right around Australia.”