Page 106 - Australian Defence Magazine Dec 2018 - Jan 2019
P. 106

Like every year, 2018 was a big year for Defence. Announcements on Land 400, the Future Frigate, JORN and many more. Minister for Defence Industry and now Defence Christopher Pyne has been the driving force behind much of the impetus in the Defence community. He spoke to ADM Managing Editor Katherine Ziesing in early December about the year that was and the year ahead.
Christopher Pyne
Future Frigates have started their Advanced Work Agreement (AWA) and the head con- tract was signed in December.
The ASC Shipbuilding, ASC Submarine and ANI (Australian Naval Infrastructure) separation was done the day of the signing of the head contract with BAE Systems, with the ASC Shipbuilding division now a subsidiary of BAE. The frigates are on track, the submarines are on track, the Os- borne South Shipyard is about 50 per cent finished; steel sides were raised in Decem- ber. The sod turning on the Osborne North Submarine Yard also happened that month. The Strategic Partnering Agreement (SPA) document negotiations are complete.
ADM: Are you sure?
PYNE: Yes, that was wrapped up in De- cember last year, and then the signatures will be early this year once the documents have been finalised.
Since the White Paper, the Combat Re- connaissance Vehicles went from five per cent Australian industry content to 55 per cent in a $5.2 billion acquisition and 70 per across the life of type of the equipment which is something that wouldn’t have hap- pened before the White Paper and before the decisions around Australian industry content. From a practical point of view we can point to many things; many of the primes increasing their workforces by 50 to 100 per cent, and contracts being decided. We had 234 decision points since I’ve been the Minister for Defence Industry and now Defence driving the program.
The other practical outcome is that the Peever Review (the First Principles Re- view) has been faithfully implemented and that has led to a sea change in the culture in the Department of Defence and the ADF where everyone is working together on ‘One Defence’ in a way that they didn’t always do so. That review’s implementation and the change of culture that it’s brought about coincided seren- dipitously with the government deciding to invest as much of its military capability built up here in Australia. That new way of doing business had an opportunity to have some practical impact. So I think the pub- lic, the Defence Department, the ADF, the primes, the states, SMEs, the foreign gov- ernments that look at what we’re doing are all recognising that actually we have got on with the job and we’re having the out- comes that we wanted.
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Minister for Defence
Appointed Minister for Defence
Appointed Minister for Defence Industry
Appointed Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science
Published his book "A Letter to my Children"
Appointed Minister for Education & Leader of the House of Representatives
Appointed Manager of Opposition Business in the House of Representatives
Shadow Minister for Education
Minister for Ageing
Parliamentary Secretary for Health
Elected to Parliament as the Member for Sturt at age 25
ADM: It’s been almost three years since the last White Paper and associated support documents have been released. What has changed in a practical sense? PYNE: I think a lot has changed in a very practical sense; that’s been one of the hall- marks of the last three years. The White Paper set us up for a strategic positioning that’s been done before.
THE difference since the 2016 White Pa- per was that it’s been backed up by a struc- ture; the Integrated Investment Program, the Defence Industry Policy Statement, the Defence Industrial Capability Plan, the Naval Shipbuilding Plan, and the Defence Export Strategy. That structure has been implemented and led to practical outcomes.
For example, the Arafura class Offshore Patrol Vessels project surprised everybody by being on schedule. We said it would be- gin construction in 12 months and it was in 12 months that it started construction. Sometimes these schedules have been a guide but since the White Paper and the as- sociated structure that you mentioned, the projects have been kept on schedule.
The OPV tender was on schedule, the de- cision was on schedule and the implementa- tion was on schedule. And the same thing is happening with the Hunter Class. The
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