AUKUS Defence Procurement Deal

Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese joined the US President Joe Biden, and the UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, in San Diego this week to announce the signing of a trilateral security pact under which the latter two countries will assist Australia in acquiring and building  nuclear-powered submarines.

The  plans included the production of up to five of the UK-designed Virginia-class nuclear-powered attack subs, with the programme set to cost an estimated A$368bn between now to mid 2050. The agreement should generate up to 20,000 jobs, with the submarines  due to enter into service in the early 2040s.

As yet there is no confirmation on the supply chain distribution between the countries, but the Australian Industry & Defence Network (AIDN), is  calling on their government to ensure as much of the supply chain as possible is fulfilled by Australian companies.

The agreement will also include the establishing of a rotational presence of UK and the US  through one UK Astute class submarine and up to four US Virginia class submarines at HMAS Stirling near Perth, Western Australia, from 2027.

But not everyone is happy with the deal. Australia’s ex-Prime Minister’s Paul Keating and Malcolm Turnbull have been critical of the pact, in part due to the decline of the UK, and a spokesperson for the China foreign ministry says the deal ignores the concerns of the International community.

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