SON2017: Defence needs cutting-edge technology

“While Australians in the past have thought that we were far removed from strife, we need to consider the sobering fact that we sit in the heavily militarised Indo-Pacific region,” Minister for Defence Industry, the Hon. Christopher Pyne has told CEDA’s State of the Nation conference in Canberra.

We are in “a region which we share with seven of the world’s 10 largest standing militaries and five of the world’s declared nuclear nations,” he said.

“The constant provocations on the Korean Peninsula remind us we face continued threats to both the security of our region and a rules-based global order.

“We also need to remember that our nation’s economic prosperity fundamentally relies on free and uninterrupted passage over the oceans through strategic sea-lanes.”

Mr Pyne said that is why government has “put defence at the centre of our national policy agenda because the threats we face are real – and growing”.

“This is why we are devoting at least $200 billion to growing our defence capability over the next decade,” he said.

“Our prosperity depends on the security of our nation. The two are inextricably entwined.

“We need to meet the current and future challenges to Australia’s national security – and we need our defence industry to do its part.

“We need a stronger defence capability – and a world-leading defence industry that can guarantee our ability to shape the strategic environment in a way that will protect the interests of the nation.

“And more than ever, we need a defence industry that is able to develop and sustain the cutting-edge technology the Australian Defence Force will rely on to protect Australia’s strategic interests.”

Mr Pyne said Australia is already home to some of the world’s most innovative defence enterprises, but we need to create an environment which incubates and nurtures new ideas and game changing technologies.

“The Turnbull Government views the sector not just as a fundamental contributor to our military capability and national security but as a crucial element in the future of our advanced manufacturing and high-tech industries; a guarantor of national prosperity,” he said.

“What I am passionate about doing is letting Australians outside the defence community understand the impact of a high quality, high technology advanced manufacturing domestic defence industry and what that can mean for jobs.”


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