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Monday, 22 March 2004
Page: 26887


Ms Vamvakinou asked the Minister representing the Minister for Defence, upon notice, on 12 February 2004:

(1) In respect of the procurement of defence equipment or systems by the Australian Government from the Government of Israel and private companies in Israel, can the Minister confirm that an electronic support system and a long-range chaff projector being installed on four Royal Australian Navy (RAN) Guided Missile Frigate (FFGs) under the FFG Upgrade Project was designed and manufactured by Rafael Armament Development Authority, Electronic Systems Division in Haifa, Israel.

(2) In respect of the electronic support system, who is the lead contractor for this project and what elements of the purchase are being conducted through Australian companies.

(3) Can the Minister confirm that the 20mm naval gun known as the `Typhoon' to be fitted to the RAN's new construction patrol boats was designed and manufactured by Rafael Armament Development Authority, Electronic Systems Division in Haifa, Israel.

(4) In respect of the fitting of the `Typhoon', who is the lead contractor for this project and what elements of the purchase are being conducted through Australian companies.

(5) In respect of the proposed electro-optical sight system for the RAN's new construction patrol boats has the system been accepted; if so, who is the lead contractor for this project and what elements of the purchase are being conducted through Australian companies.

(6) Is the procurement of any other defence equipment and systems occurring through the Rafael Armament Development Authority.


Mr Brough (Minister for Employment Services and Minister Assisting the Minister for Defence) —The Minister for Defence has provided the following answer to the honourable member's questions as follows:

(1) Yes.

(2) The lead (Prime) Contractor for the FFG Upgrade Project and the Electronic Support system is ADI Ltd. All components associated with the system are being procured under ADI subcontract from RAFAEL - Armament Development Authority, Electronic Systems Division in Haifa, Israel.

(3) The primary weapon system to be fitted to the Royal Australian Navy's (RAN) new Armidale Class Patrol Boats is the Rafael Armament Development Authority of Israel's 25mmTyphoon Mk-25. This Typhoon system will have the Bushmaster 25mm cannon manufactured by ATK USA as the armament.

(4) The prime contractor for the Armidale Class Patrol Boat project is Defence Maritime Services. The Rafael Armament Development Authority of Israel is a subcontractor supplying the Typhoon weapon system, and for all but the lead unit, which will be produced and tested in Israel, the production is expected to be arranged by Rafael through General Dynamics Land Systems Australia, along with the support of the system through its life. For the supply of the Bushmaster cannon, the Rafael Armament Development Authority of Israel was contracted directly by Defence because of the lead time involved in the cannon production.

(5) Defence Maritime Services has yet to subcontract a supplier for the electro-optical sight to be fitted to the Armidale Class Patrol Boats. The system will be accepted by Defence as part of the acceptance process for each Armidale Class Patrol Boat. This acceptance process is based around the specified performance that is to be provided by the patrol boats and associated systems under the contract.

(6) The FFG Upgrade Project is also purchasing the LESCUT Expendable Acoustic Decoy. This device is a joint venture between Ultra Electronics, Ocean Systems Inc (formally BAE) in Massachusetts, USA and RAFAEL - Armament Development Authority, Ordnance Division in Haifa, Israel.