FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – MARCH 18, 2015
Claims yesterday by Swedish defence giant Saab that the Abbott government had misrepresented its submarine building capability has reinforced the need for the upcoming Sub Summit – a three-day forum that kicks off at the Adelaide Convention Centre next week.
The Sub Summit (March 24-26) will host key figures in the national defence debate, where they will discuss – without political spin – the ongoing uncertainty surrounding the Future Submarine program and associated issues that, up until now, have largely been ignored or caught up in a web of political semantics.
Further to this, reports yesterday claimed that the head of Sweden’s defence purchasing agency, Lena Erixon, protested to Australian officials about the denigration of Sweden’s submarine industry soon after the ‘competitive evaluation process’ debacle.
South Australian independent senator Nick Xenophon will be one of many high profile speakers at the Sub Summit. He strongly supports the aims of the conference, which largely revolve around clarifying what has been a very controversial and opaque process.
Earlier this month, and not for the first time, Senator Xenophon asked the federal government to commit to maintaining Australia’s naval ship building capacity.
“Without such a commitment, this government will be remembered as the one that oversaw the hollowing-out of our naval ship building strength, outsourcing it to foreign countries that will milk tax payers of billions and undermine the reliability of our naval fleet,” he said.
Katherine Ziesing, editor of Australian Defence Magazine who will also speak at the Sub Summit, said the Future Submarine program is suffering from a perception problem.
“The defence industry and state governments are still worried about the possibility of another captain’s call from the Prime Minister, despite the so called competitive evaluation process,” she said.
“Given the multi-billion dollar nature of this program that will shape at least the next two generations of submariners, the government owes the public a transparent process that puts the best interests of the nation and navy at the fore front of any decision making process.”
This year is the most important period to get the Future Submarine program right – for the ADF, national economy and local jobs. All stakeholders – direct and indirect – are encouraged to the Sub Summit.
Got to www.subsummit.com.au to find out more and to register your details.
1. Katherine Ziesing, editor of Australian Defence Magazine, will speak at the Sub Summit next week.
For more information:
Mark Ryan 0411 060 632 / [email protected]
Brent Espeland 0411 863 226 / [email protected]
Dr John Bruni 0448 581 890 / [email protected]