BAE Systems has been awarded a £20bn contract to equip the Australian Navy with a new fleet of Type 26 Global Combat frigates as part of the SEA 5000 programme. The Global Combat Ship - Australia is based on Type 26 Frigates from BAE Systems which specialise in anti-submarine combat.
Although this is big news for a UK company, the UK workforce is unlikely to directly benefit as the ships will be built in South Australia, by Australian workers and using Australian suppliers. Still, this is a big vote of confidence in a UK champion.
BAE Systems Chief Executive, Charles Woodburn, said: “BAE Systems’ selection as preferred tenderer for SEA 5000 reinforces our position as a leading designer and builder of complex maritime platforms. I am proud that our world class anti-submarine warfare design and our approach to transferring technology and skills to the nations in which we work is expected to contribute to the development of an enduring world-class naval shipbuilding industry in Australia.”
Theresa May, Prime Minister, said: “The sheer scale and nature of this contract puts the UK at the very forefront of maritime design and engineering, and demonstrates what can be achieved by UK industry and government working hand-in-hand.
“We have always been clear that as we leave the EU we have an opportunity to build on our close relationships with allies like Australia. This deal is a perfect illustration that the government is doing exactly that."