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Thursday, 16 May 2013
Page: 3450

Mr NEUMANN (BlairParliamentary Secretary for Health and Ageing and Parliamentary Secretary to the Attorney-General) (10:14): On behalf of the Special Minister of State, I move

That, in accordance with the provisions of the Public Works Committee Act 1969, it is expedient to carry out the following proposed work which was referred to the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Public Works and on which the committee has duly reported to Parliament: Air Warfare Destroyer Ship sustainment facilities at Garden Island, Randwick Barracks and HMAS Watson in Sydney, New South Wales.

The new air warfare destroyer will replace the Navy's Adelaide class guided missile frigates with three Hobart class air defence capable ships.

The air warfare destroyers currently under construction in three shipyards in Newcastle in New South Wales, Williamstown in Victoria and Osborne in South Australia will be the most intense and complex warships introduced into service in the Royal Australian Navy. The first new air warfare destroyer, HMAS Hobart, is due for delivery in 2016. The air warfare destroyer ship sustainment facilities project will provide permanent maintenance, systems support and infrastructure at Garden Island and training facilities at Randwick Barracks and HMAS Watson in Sydney New South Wales.

Garden Island in Sydney will be operational base for the new air warfare destroyers, and the project proposes to co-locate and share certain facilities with the new landing helicopter dockships that will also operate from Sydney. At Garden Island there will be berthing infrastructure upgrades to the walls and a new shared three-storey office building to accommodate personnel involved in maintaining and keeping the ships operational. At Randwick Barracks there will be new air warfare destroyer training centres for crews which also co-locate and share certain facilities with the landing helicopter dock training centre. At HMAS Watson there will be a new air warfare destroyer command team trainer to practise and hone the ship's command teams in the profession of maritime warfare.

The estimated cost of the proposal is $109.9 million plus GST and includes all delivery costs from management and design fees, construction costs, information communication technology, furniture, fittings and equipment, contingencies and allowance for escalation. Capital investment in the project will have economic benefits for the Sydney region and local industry with significant opportunities for subcontractors in the construction industry over the next three years. In its report the Public Works Committee has recommended that these works should proceed. Subject to parliamentary approval, construction is expected to commence later this year and be completed by late 2015. On behalf of the government, I would like to thank the committee for its support and I commend the motion to the House.

Question agreed to.