A $707.9 million project to upgrade facilities at RAAF Bases Edinburgh (SA), Darwin (NT), Pearce (WA) and Townsville (Qld), and HMAS Stirling (WA) ahead of the arrival of new maritime patrol aircraft has been referred to the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Public Works, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Defence Darren Chester announced today.
Mr Chester said the Facilities Requirement for the Maritime Patrol Aircraft Replacement Project supported the acquisition of eight P-8A Poseidon aircraft.
“Facilities will be developed at the Main Operating Base at RAAF Base Edinburgh, as well as works at Forward Operating Bases at RAAF Bases Darwin, Pearce and Townsville. The existing Torpedo Maintenance Facility at HMAS Stirling will also be refurbished and new Explosive Ordnance storage constructed,” Mr Chester said.
“These new and upgraded facilities and infrastructure are essential to the operation of the P-8A Poseidon aircraft.”
The P-8A aircraft will provide Australia with an advanced Maritime Intelligence, Surveillance, Reconnaissance and Response capability to undertake operations and activities conducted in support of the national interest.
“This investment will bring economic benefits for local industry across the country over five years, predominantly in South Australia and the Northern Territory,” Mr Chester said.
Subject to Parliamentary approval of the project, construction is expected to begin in 2015 and be completed by the end of 2020.
Chloe Petch (Darren Chester’s office) 0477 395 356
Defence Media Operations (02) 6127 1999