Military Capabilities

Australia progressing plans to upgrade Cocos Keeling Islands airport to support P-8A MPA operations

17 June 2019

Australia is moving ahead with plans to upgrade facilities at the Cocos Keeling Islands airport to support operations using P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft (MPA): a move that will significantly extend the country's surveillance capability in the northern Indian Ocean.

A Department of Defence (DoD) Request for Tender released on 14 June sought planning proposals by 8 August under Project 8129 for the strengthening and widening of runways, taxiways and aprons, improvements to airfield stormwater infrastructure, and refurbishment of airfield ground lighting "to meet [the Department of] Defence's operational and support requirements".

The estimated value of the upgrade was put at AUD190-220 million (USD133-154 million).

Want to read more? For analysis on this article and access to all our insight content, please enquire about our subscription options at

(129 of 410 words)