COVID-19 has not changed Australia’s plans with anti-submarine warfare fleet, says GlobalData

Following the interaction with the Department of Defence (Australia) on their Hunter-class anti-submarine warfare (ASW) program on 29 May 2020;

Mathew George, Ph.D., Aerospace & Defense Analyst at GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company, offers his view:

“According to GlobalData’s report, The Global Naval Vessels and Surface Combatants Market 2020-2030, Australia’s ASW program consists of 74% of future naval surface vessels spend till 2030. And as of now, Australia has not changed its plans with regards to the nine Hunter-class frigates as Australia’s long-term need for a regionally superior Anti-Submarine Warfare fleet has not changed.

“The SEA 5000 phase I program, worth A$35bn (US$23.27bn) is still in the early design and mobilization phase and a spokesperson for the Department of Defence shared that the progress during the first 18 months has been rapid and on target. The prototyping phase is expected to commence later this year.

“Australia has been grappling with the need to develop locally, and invested A$535m (US$355.74m) in the redevelopment of the Osborne South shipyard, which is nearly complete, from where the ships will be manufactured.

“Australia has always been concerned by the growing presence of China in the region, and as a result the continued development of ASW capabilities and a robust shipbuilding enterprise are vital to Australia’s national security. This includes ‘protecting critical trade and communication routes which will be critical to our interests as Australia continues to emerge from the impacts of COVID-19,’ said the spokesperson. In the midst of companies laying off employees, Australia’s National Naval Shipbuilding Enterprise is expected to create more than 2,900 jobs at its peak.”

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