The Australian Industry & Defence Network (AIDN) - an association that represents the country's defence small to medium enterprises (SMEs) - has called on the Australian government to "urgently review" its policy to support national defence industrial development.
AIDC said that the government's Australian Industry Capability (AIC) programme needs to be assessed to ensure that it provides opportunities for local companies to compete for defence work in Australia and overseas, and that it encourages investment and intellectual property development in the country's defence sector.
AIDN said the call to review the AIC programme has been prompted by its members reporting "significant frustration in getting Australian industry involved to the extent envisioned" in major defence procurement programmes including projects to acquire and build next-generation submarines, frigates and offshore patrol vessels, combat reconnaissance vehicles, and the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II fighter aircraft.
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