SAAB combat systems centre backed by $22 million MMI grant

The federal government will spend more than $22 million to support the development of Saab Australia’s Sovereign Combat System Collaboration Centre under the Collaboration Stream of the $1.3 billion Modern Manufacturing Initiative.

Three federal ministers and the SA Premier Steven Marshall today issued a joint media release claiming credit for the initiative, which supports Saab’s $75 million development of its Mawson Lakes, Adelaide facilities.

Coalition governments in Adelaide and Canberra are facing re-election with the state election due on 19 March, with the announcement the latest in a series of election sweeteners for SA.

Saab’s combat system has been selected for inclusion in the nine Hunter class frigates being constructed at Osborne in Adelaide.

The upgraded centre will further ensure the system is integrated with world-leading technology, combining the expertise of small and medium manufacturers and building workplace skills.

Saab’s Sovereign Combat System Collaboration Centre will also address critical industry skills shortages, and help Australian SME’s gain access to national and global defence supply chains.

The project is anticipated to create more than 950 jobs by 2027, according to the government.

Minister for industry Angus Taylor said said: “We want more Australian businesses to contribute to local and international defence supply chains, and more Australian innovation and intellectual property to be contributed to products supplied to the ADF and other markets.

“This investment with Saab will enable us to leverage our highly-skilled workforce, and world leading innovation and manufacturing might to strengthen our combat system capabilities on home soil and unlock new opportunities in some of the world’s most advanced supply chains.”

Minister for finance and Senator for South Australia Simon Birmingham said the project would lead to more modern manufacturing jobs in SA and down the track more export dollars for the state.

“This centre will be another significant asset for SA’s growing Defence manufacturing sector and will complement the various naval shipbuilding programs that are already occurring within our state.”

Picture: SAAB Australia

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