Sikorsky Australia, which has a base at the Albatross Aviation Technology Park, south west of Nowra has been awarded a $10 million contract by the United States Navy to provide additional support to the Royal Australian Navy's fleet of MH-60R Romeo multi-mission helicopters.
The contract for the sustainment for Australia's fleet of 24 Romeo helicopters, based out of HMAS Albatross, is delivered locally in Australia through a Foreign Military Sales (FMS) agreement with the US Navy, providing opportunities for Australian defence industry.
The helicopters were first acquired from the US Navy through the FMS process and entered into service in 2013.
This $10 million contract expansion will see Sikorsky Australia, which is a Lockheed Martin company. deliver more sustainment support and maintenance to Australia's Romeo helicopter fleet at their state-of-the-art maintenance, logistics and repair facility.
Minister for Defence Industry Melissa Price said the contract expansion was clear evidence of the remarkable capability of Australia's defence industry, generating 10 new jobs in the Shoalhaven region.
"This new contract recognises the increased skill and expertise of the Australian workforce as this would previously have been completed in the United States," Minister Price said.
"The increase in services provided by Sikorsky Australia will continue to boost Australia's defence industry and broaden the ongoing opportunities available to local companies to support the Romeo fleet."
Minister Price said the US Navy's role in supporting the Australian aircraft was critical.
"The broad scope and enduring nature of the Australia-US Alliance offers mutual benefit to both our nations," Minister Price said.
"This allows for the ongoing provision of support to Australia's next-generation maritime combat helicopters.
"The contract expansion demonstrates the strong ties between our navies and highlights the internationally recognised strength of Australia's defence industry.
"The sustainment arrangements for Australia's fleet of Romeo helicopters continue to contribute to our world-class deeper maintenance and sustainment workforce in Australia, supporting Australia's burgeoning industry capability to deliver global fleet maintenance in our region."
Senator for NSW Jim Molan welcomed the expanded contract, saying it "is a real win for the region."
"The Morrison Government is continuing to back local businesses and local jobs and this contract is recognition by the US Navy of the substantial expertise which we have in the Shoalhaven region from the $270 billion investment in Australia's defence capability," Senator Molan said.
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