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Wednesday, 15 February 2017
Page: 1012


Senator CAROL BROWN (Tasmania) (15:59): I, and on behalf of Senators Bilyk, Duniam, Polley, Urquhart, Abetz, Bushby and Singh, move:

That the Senate—

(a) acknowledges that Tasmania has the defence knowledge, capabilities and capacities to participate in the defence industries sector;

(b) notes that:

   (i) the University of Tasmania, through its world leading marine research, engineering and training facility, the Australian Maritime College (AMC), is the acknowledged Australian leader in maritime education in both technical skills and research,

   (ii) the AMC has developed a range of Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUV) which are suited for defence purposes and provide the opportunity for:

(A) increased consolidation of research and innovation at the University of Tasmania Inveresk site,

(B) the redevelopment of the University of Tasmania, AMC Newnham site, and

(C) associated local advanced manufacturing, particularly in North and North West Tasmania,

   (iii) the state-of-the-art AUVs enable a broad range of scientific, industry and defence-related projects by facilitating exploration and data collection in remote and inhospitable locations,

   (iv) the AMC has the capability to lead or play a key role in any necessary training associated with significant defence projects, such as the Future Submarines Program,

   (v) in addition to the defence opportunity that the AUVs represent, Tasmania already has a number of industries with the capability to participate in defence-related industries supporting, for example, combat reconnaissance vehicles, shield and antenna protection and marine survival,

   (vi) defence industry opportunities for Tasmania will deliver a range of significant social and economic benefits across the state, including a growth in industry research and increased employment through advanced manufacturing, and

   (vii) there is unequivocal and mutual support from both Labor and Liberal parties at a state and federal level for Tasmania as a key centre for defence research, development and industry; and

(c) calls on:

   (i) the Department of Defence to continue to work with industry with the goal of ensuring Tasmania is as integrated as possible in Australia's defence capability, including defence research, associated education, training and manufacturing, and

   (ii) the Government to continue working collaboratively with the Tasmanian Government so Tasmania can play its role in the defence research and manufacturing industries sector.