Joint Media Release

From concern to exemplar - Collins Class submarine sustainment

MC 50/16

Senator the Hon. Mathias Cormann
Minister for Finance
Deputy Leader of the Government in the Senate
Senator for Western Australia

The Hon. Christopher Pyne MP
Minister for Defence Industry

Senator the Hon. Marise Payne
Minister for Defence

21 October 2016

Minister for Defence Senator the Hon Marise Payne, the Minister for Defence Industry, the Hon Christopher Pyne MP and the Minister for Finance, Senator the Hon Mathias Cormann have congratulated the Collins Class Submarine Sustainment Program at ASC, following an independent follow-up review on the progress made in addressing the findings of the original 2012 Coles Review.

Minister Payne said the follow-up review, Beyond Benchmark, completed by Mr John Coles found a remarkable improvement in the capability to successfully manage the sustainment of the Collins Class submarines.

“The review considered current Collins Class sustainment performance, plans for sustaining Collins performance during transition to the Future Submarine, and opportunities for improving Collins beyond international benchmarks,” Minister Payne said. 

“Improvements to the availability and reliability of the Collins Class submarines means that they can spend more days at sea conducting exercises and operations that directly contribute to our strategic defence capability.” 

"Submarines play a key part in our national security every day, delivering a powerful instrument to deter conflict and a potent weapon if needed.’’

Minister Pyne said Beyond Benchmark also provides a number of observations and additional recommendations for sustaining and improving performance into the future.

"This is a strong endorsement of the capability of Australia's defence industry and those involved should be commended for taking a project facing significant issues and transforming it into one which is a shining example of what can be achieved." 

"This report reiterates  that we have the capability and skills to deliver large complex defence projects - a skills base that needs to be nurtured, expanded and then exported to the world." 

“Defence intends to adopt a tailored set of these observations and recommendations to assure the performance of the Collins Class submarine capability into the future,” he said.

“ASC’s turnaround in performance in relation to submarine sustainment demonstrates the significant progress this business has made in both experience and capability. The Government’s decision earlier this month to create a separate submarine sustainment business will ensure that these enhanced skills and expertise will continue to be deployed in the best possible way to support future submarine sustainment,” Minister Cormann said.

Business of Sustaining Australia’s Collins Class Submarine Capability: Beyond Benchmark can be viewed here.

[ENDS]

Media Contact(s): 

Minister Cormann media contact
Karen Wu: 0428 350 139

Minister Payne Media Contact
Henry Budd: 0429 531 143

Minister Pyne Media Contacts
Rory Grant: 0439 764 809
Eleisa Hancock: 0427 981 990

Senator the Hon Mathias Cormann, Minister for Finance, Perth