Military Capabilities

Report proposes involving Saab Kockums in Australia’s Future Submarine programme

11 March 2020

The capability, cost and scheduling of Australia’s AUD80 billion (USD47.2 billion) Future Submarine programme have been criticised in a report by consultancy firm Insight Economics that proposes the introduction of a ‘Plan B’ involving Saab’s Kockums naval business area.

The report, which was prepared for Sydney-based businessman Gary Johnston and backed by an expert reference group, suggests Canberra should commission Saab’s Kockums, which designed the Royal Australian Navy’s (RAN’s) current fleet of six Collins-class submarines, to develop a preliminary design study (PDS) for an evolved version of the class.

Introducing a parallel pathway would create valuable competitive pressure as well as recognise that evolving a new submarine from an existing successful platform is the approach followed by all other countries that build and operate submarines, the report notes.

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