Australian Defence Minister Christopher Pyne, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrision and French Defence Minister Florence Parly shake hands after signing the Attack class submarine Strategic Partnership Agreement in Canberra, Monday, February 11, 2019. (AAP Image/Lukas Coch)

Government delivers on future submarine program

Media release
11 Feb 2019
Prime Minister, Minister for Defence, Minister for Defence Industry

Photo: AAP Image/Lukas Coch

A key plank of the Government’s plan to keep Australians safe has been locked in with the signing of the Attack class submarine Strategic Partnering Agreement with Naval Group.

The $50 billion Attack class program will see 12 regionally superior submarines designed and built in Australia for the Navy.

The formal signing of the Agreement is a defining moment for the country.

The submarines will help protect Australia’s security and prosperity for decades to come and also deepen the defence relationship between Australia and France.

Work on the submarines has taken place under the Design and Mobilisation Contract and this will continue uninterrupted under this Agreement.

Our Government is committed to maximising local industry involvement in the program to ensure Australians get the most out of this important national investment.

It’s estimated the program will generate an annual average of around 2,800 jobs, helping end the ‘valley of death’ in naval shipbuilding jobs we inherited from the Labor Party.

Work continues to deliver the first Attack class submarine, to be named HMAS Attack, in the early 2030s within budget.

The formalisation of this agreement represents the contractual basis for the program.

The decision to partner with Naval Group (formerly DCNS) was made in 2016, following a competitive evaluation process commenced by our Government after the Labor Party failed to commission even one single new ship for our Navy. During the negotiations, the Government focused on delivering an equitable and enduring agreement in the interests of our nation.

Other activities required to deliver this major program, including the development of the submarine construction yard at Osborne in South Australia, are continuing. 

The Attack class submarines are a major pillar of our $90 billion National Shipbuilding Plan, which will see 54 naval vessels built in Australia, to meet the strategic requirements set out in our 2016 Defence White Paper and giving our Navy the edge it needs in an uncertain world.