Minister for Defence, the Honourable Christopher Pyne, could not contain his genuine enthusiasm for Civmec’s new shipbuilding and maintenance facility, currently under construction at Henderson, as he addressed the company’s workforce.
Describing the immense structure as “magnificent”, Minister Pyne congratulated Civmec on having the foresight to invest in the future of Australia’s defence capability, both in people and infrastructure.
“Civmec really took up the challenge, and decided if there’s going to be a shipbuilding industry in Australia, we want to be part of it,” the Minister said.
Minister Pyne was on site back in April 2017 to mark the first day of ground preparation works for the new facility, and wanted to return one last time to see its progression before retiring from his political career. Designed to be one of the most efficient and innovative in the world, the development will deliver a new world-class resource to the Australian maritime landscape and significantly enhance the capability available nationally.
Minister Pyne also wanted to take the opportunity to address and thank Civmec’s skilled and talented workforce, congratulating them on the important role they are playing, not only in growing Australia’s sovereign shipbuilding capability, but ultimately in the defence of the country.
“The skilled workforce that you represent gives the Government the confidence to invest in Australia rather than building ships and submarines overseas,” he said.
Minister Pyne reflected on the Coalition Government’s decision six years ago to invest in Australia’s defence capability. The result of this today, being the commitment to build 57 military vessels in Australia, including 12 new Arafura class Offshore Patrol Vessels (OPVs) for the Royal Australian Navy.
In partnership with Luerssen Australia, Civmec will supply and process steel for all 12 OPVs, with the preparation and profile cutting of steel plates for the first two vessels currently underway at Henderson. Following the build of the first two vessels at Osborne in South Australia, Civmec will complete the fabrication and construction of the following 10 vessels in its new world-class ship assembly hall.
The Minister reiterated how proud Civmec and the workforce should be of the amazing work being delivered, and the significant capability being developed across specialised trades.