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Naval gazing: The future of Australia's naval shipbuilding and repair sector

By Andrew Davies, Mark Thomson and Various authors

This report presents a range of views on the future of Australia’s naval shipbuilding and repair industry.

ASPI asked a range of government and industry players for their views, and their responses form the first section of this report. Papers are by Andrew Davies, Defence Materiel Organisation (DMO), Defence SA Advisory Board, Defence Industry Unit of the Victorian Government, BAE Systems Australia, Austal Shipbuilding, Henry Ergas and Mark Thomson. Some common themes emerged: the challenge to develop the capacity to deliver the future, the need to manage the workflow for industry to avoid a ‘boom and bust’ pattern, and the need for Australian industry to be competitive in a global marketplace.

The second part of this report is a summary of a follow-on workshop discussion facilitated by ASPI in Canberra.  The discussion included the possibility of a government-driven rationalisation of the local shipbuilding industry. The report captures the views of participants and ASPI provides some observations and recommendations.