· Minister Hodgett welcomes Australian JSF order
· JSF order to boost Victoria’s defence and aerospace manufacturing sector
· Victorian Coalition Government working to secure manufacturing jobs and build a better Victoria
Minister for Manufacturing David Hodgett welcomed the Commonwealth Government’s announcement that it would acquire an additional 58 F-35 Lightning Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) Aircraft.
Mr Hodgett said the move would further boost Victoria’s thriving defence and aerospace manufacturing sector, which has secured 70 per cent of JSF contracts awarded in Australia to date as part of the world’s largest collaborative defence and aerospace program.
“Victorian expertise and innovation has positioned our local defence and aerospace manufacturing industry at the forefront of Australia’s connection to the JSF program’s global supply chain,” Mr Hodgett said.
“Nine Victorian-based companies are contracted to deliver components and support to the JSF program on an ongoing basis, and a number of others completed contracts during the earlier production phases.
“This additional order of F-35 aircraft will help to create more high-skill, high-value manufacturing jobs across Melbourne and regional Victoria.”
Victorian companies currently participating in the JSF program are manufacturing products such as voice recognition software, cable assemblies, casting, countermeasure flares, tooling and engine components, airframe and system component machining, vertical tail assemblies, engine installation trailers and airframe tooling, actuators and optics.
Earlier this month, Victorian precision engineering firm Marand delivered its first completed Victorian-made F-35 vertical tail assembly – an integral part of the fifth generation JSF aircraft – to BAE Systems and Lockheed Martin.
Marand is also manufacturing JSF engine installation trailers and F-35 airframe tooling in Victoria for Lockheed Martin as part of the US-led JSF program.
The Victorian Coalition Government has worked closely with Marand, and supported the company’s participation in trade missions to China, ASEAN, India, the UK and the USA.
Mr Hodgett said the Coalition Government was committed to supporting local industry to maintain and strengthen the state’s world class defence and aerospace manufacturing capabilities.