Australia boost its Defence Export Strategy

The landmark document sets out the policy and strategy to make Australia one of the top ten global defence exporters within the next decade.

Australian Bushmaster
Bushmaster  armoured vehicle (Picture source: Australian MoD)

It is an ambitious, positive plan to boost Australian industry, increase investment, and create more jobs for Australian businesses. It will complement the Turnbull Government’s record $200 billion investment in Australian Defence Force capability, and continue Australia’s record performance in job creation.

The Defence Export Strategy includes several new initiatives and investments.

First a new Australian Defence Export Office will work hand-in-hand with Austrade and the Centre for Defence Industry Capability to coordinate our whole-of-government efforts, providing a focal point for defence exports.

Second, a new Australian Defence Export Advocate will provide high-level advocacy for defence exports and work across industry and government to ensure our efforts are coordinated.

Third, a $3.8 billion Defence Export Facility will be administered by Efic, Australia’s export credit agency. This will help Australian companies get the finance they need to underpin the sales of their equipment overseas. It will provide confidence to Australian Defence industry to identify and pursue new export opportunities knowing Efic’s support is available when there is a market gap for defence finance.

Fourth, $20 million per year will be spent to implement the Defence Export Strategy and support defence industry exports, including $6.35 million to develop and implement strategic multi-year export campaigns, an additional $3.2 million to enhance and expand the Global Supply Chain program, and an additional $4.1 million for grants to help build the capability of small and medium enterprises to compete internationally.

This strategy will make Australian defence exports among the best in the world. Australia has many defence industry success stories: Thales’ Bushmaster, Hawkei and sonars, Austal’s ships and engineering and CEA’s world beating radar, amongst many others. It would primarily focus on boosting exports to the US, UK, Canada and New Zealand, but it would also target markets in Asia and the Middle East.