US missiles could be made in Australia

Australia could become integral to the US national security supply chain after it was announced that the Pacific nation would seek to establish a domestic missile industry to support US and Australian defense forces.

and Press conference In Washington, D.C., Australian Defense Industry Minister Pat Conroy told reporters that Australia had signed contracts with two of the leading missile manufacturers in the U.S. defense industry, Lockheed Martin Australia and Raytheon Australia. He said he was looking at opportunities to build missiles or missile parts for both countries. .

“This is a very important company,” said Conroy. “The lesson from the Ukrainian war is that we use missile stocks or all ammunition, but especially guided weapons in conflict very fast,” he said.

“That’s why the guided weapons business is a multi-billion dollar exercise to develop it, and at the end of this process you’ll have a much more sovereign capability to build and upgrade a very important missile. I am convinced.”

Regarding domestic military strength, Conroy said Australia needed more stockpiles than it currently possessed.

“Frankly, we need more missiles in Australia, both in stock and the ability to maintain, repair and upgrade those missiles,” he said.

Comments from Conroy were echoed by Frank St. John, Lockheed Martin’s second-largest executive in the world. Australian Financial Review (AFR) said on October 17 that the global strategic environment is rapidly deteriorating, forcing military and defense contractors to focus on building existing platforms and maximizing their performance. clarified.

“Given the urgency of the threat environment we face, building capabilities with the systems that we have and finding ways to integrate those systems to create new capabilities and effects is critical at this time. So I think it’s more practical than developing a new one, I won’t be competing for 10 years,” he told AFR.

“As much as we want to develop new things, we have to be pragmatic, open and pragmatic about things that meet the urgent needs of our customers.”

Build mobile rocket systems in Australia

Lockheed Martin also began talks with the Australian government to build a multiple launch rocket system (MLRS) in Australia after the company faced production delays and supply change issues.

MLRS is Heavy-duty automatic missile launcher with high mobility Fires surface-to-surface rockets from the launcher weapon platform. Three crew members fire their weapons within a minute of her, firing up to 12 guided MLRS (GMLRS) or extended range GMLRS rockets, four precision strike missiles or her two Army Tactical Missile Systems. I can do it. It can also be transported on C-17 and C-5 aircraft.

“The U.S. supply chain is under stress in many key areas such as propulsion and explosives, so we want to expand our supply chain to include Australian industry,” St. John told AFR. Told.

This is important for companies contracted by the US military to recapitalize and refurbish 94 of the US military’s existing MLRS systems.

of Agreement, valued at over $586 million (A$986 million), overhauls the M270 MLRS and offers a new engine, improved armored cab, and compatibility with future MLRS families, the new Common Fire Control Upgrade as a “zero time” launcher with System. of munitions.

The launcher’s improved armored cab significantly increases internal volume and incorporates a new energy-absorbing sheet that provides increased protection from mine blasts and improvised explosive devices. Lockheed Martin will also upgrade the fire control board and fire control system.

Victoria Kelly-Clark


Victoria Kelly-Clark is an Australia-based reporter focusing on the national politics and geopolitical environment in the Asia-Pacific region, the Middle East and Central Asia.