Page 148 - Australian Defence Magazine September 2018
P. 148

“Works under the Australia- Singapore Military Training Initiative will be different to the works being undertaken in the remediation project.”
Contractor for the SWBTA Remediation Project in April 2018.
The work will include a new urban op- erations training facility, a hardened beach landing area to support amphibious opera- tions, hardened creek crossings (important to reduce the amount of sediment washed into the ocean), upgrade work to the Sam- uel Hill and Williamson Airfields, im- proved medical facilities and an upgraded internal road network. Construction will
development of its amphibious capability. We are working closely with the Services to ensure that SWBTA is an even better training area for Defence. These construc- tion works are informed by the ADF’s ex- periences of training and exercising in the area – and the lessons learned from past activities.”
The enhancements to the SWBTA will also enhance the training experiences of Australia’s allies and partners who also use
the area, principally the Unit- ed States and SAF. Whilst Defence is looking to deliver better training outcomes for the ADF and its allies, it is doing so in a way that meets Defence’s environmental ob- ligations.
“Defence is aware of the high environmental values in the area of Shoalwater Bay, including its proximity to the
Great Barrier Reef Marine Park. We will continue to place a high priority on pro- tecting the environment, including wa- ter, heritage, native plants and animals. We are working closely with the com- munity on environmental management at the site, including engaging with local councils, traditional owners and other in- terested parties.”
Australia-Singapore Military Training Initiative
The Australia-Singapore Military Training Initiative started with the signing of a Com- prehensive Strategic Partnership (CSP) back in 2015 and builds on existing defence relations with Singapore. Under the CSP, Australia and Singapore will jointly devel- op military training areas and facilities in Central and North Queensland.
Up to 14,000 Singapore Armed Forces personnel are expected to conduct unilat- eral training in the two training areas, for up to 18 weeks each year. Both training ar- eas will be owned by the Australian Gov- ernment and the ADF will have priority use of the training areas.
Singapore’s armed forces have been utilising the SWBTA for their unilat- eral exercises for more than a quarter of a century and the expansion of the Central Queensland training area in conjunction with the new facility in the North of the state will both further develop the train- ing relationship between the two countries and provide further benefits for the ADF.
“The Australia-Singapore Military Training Initiative builds off a very positive history between Australia and Singapore, where the SAF has successfully undertak- en training in the Shoalwater Bay Train- ing Area for over 25 years. This Initiative
be completed between 2019 and 2022. “These remediation works will ensure that the SWBTA will support the ADF’s future training outcomes while preserving the area’s environmental values,” Birrer ex- plained to ADM. “Enabling future ADF training outcomes are a key driver of the project. For example, the hardened beach landing zone will contribute to the ADF’s
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