Appointment of first Australian Defence Export Advocate

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The Hon Christopher Pyne MP

Minister for Defence Industry

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Scott Bolitho: 02 6277 7840

Eleisa Hancock: 02 6277 7840,

Defence Media (02) 6127 1999,

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9 April 2018

David Johnston has been appointed as the first Australian Defence Export Advocate. This role will provide international advocacy on behalf of local defence industry to help secure export sales and contracts.

Minister for Defence Industry, the Hon Christopher Pyne MP, congratulated Mr Johnston on his appointment and looked forward to working closely with him to help secure export successes for Australia’s defence industry.

“This appointment will greatly expand the Government’s reach in promoting Australia’s world class defence industry,” Minister Pyne said.

“As a former Minister for Defence, Mr Johnston brings a wealth of experience and knowledge of Australian defence industry to this significant role.”

Minister Pyne said we are already seeing many great Australian defence industry export success stories, such as with the Bushmaster vehicles, and the Turnbull Government is committed to assisting Australian businesses to achieve even more.

“I work tirelessly to advocate for Australian industries looking to sell their world class defence materiel to our friends and allies but I can’t be everywhere.  Our Defence Export Advocate will help connect Australian industry to overseas governments and defence forces, build relationships in our key markets and act as a focal point for long term campaigns.”

“An exporting company is better able to expand and employ more.”

“As the first Australian Defence Export Advocate, Mr Johnston will also work closely with the Australian Defence Export Office to provide senior advocacy.”

The appointment of Mr Johnston to this position delivers on one of the Defence Export Strategy’s key initiatives, while providing a more permanent and proactive advocacy capability to support Australian defence industry’s efforts internationally.

Through the Defence Export Strategy, released on 29 January 2018, the Australian Government has committed up to an additional $20 million funding annually from 2018-19 to support Australia’s defence exports.

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