Minister for Defence Industry, the Hon Melissa Price has announced the Department of Defence and Lockheed Martin Australia have signed a Strategic Deed and an Integration, Maintenance and Administration Services (IMAS) contract to support the sovereign sustainment of F-35s in Australia.
Together with the Heads of Agreement announced in February this year, the Strategic Deed is the first of its kind strategic agreement to be signed by the Commonwealth and provides a contractual framework for Lockheed Martin Australia and the Department of Defence that will underpin all F-35 sustainment contracts in Australia. Under the framework, Lockheed Martin Australia leads a team of local partners that have been successful in securing regional and local F-35 sustainment assignments.
The Strategic Deed also establishes Australia as the first partner with which Lockheed Martin has entered into a direct, long-term commercial agreement for F-35 sustainment.
The IMAS contract, which is the first such contract to be signed under the Strategic Deed, appoints Lockheed Martin Australia to deliver Autonomic Logistics Information System (ALIS) support including administration services, mission combat system support and cyber accreditation for Australia’s F-35 program. The IMAS contract will support 60 new skilled jobs cementing the centre as the core F-35 sustainment capability in the region.
Interim Chief Executive of Lockheed Martin Australia, Scott Thompson, said the Strategic Deed and IMAS agreements represented a critical step in establishing a sustainment capability that will meet the Royal Australian Air Force’s 5th Generation needs.
“As the original equipment manufacturer and lead sustainment partner globally, we are proud to partner with the Department of Defence to lead sustainment support for the Australian F-35 program,” he said.
“Our new contracts with the Department of Defence are an important step in developing 5th Generation sovereign capability, providing opportunity for potentially billions of dollars’ worth of new sustainment contracts for local industry.”
By the mid-2020s, the value of Australian F-35 contracts in place across production and sustainment is expected to be in the vicinity of $5 billion.