28 February 2022
Independent Senator Rex Patrick has called on the Government to procure six off the shelf submarines, built in Adelaide, as a priority recommendation in today's scathing Senate report into Australia’s sovereign naval shipbuilding capability.
"This Government purports to be strong on defence on the basis of its planning and the scale of its expenditure, but it shows great weakness in implementation and delivery," said Senator Patrick.
"The Australian people should recognise that the Government has left Australia vulnerable. This is a story of national security failure."
With China and Taiwan's relationship in a tinderbox, the Australian Government's announcement to procure nuclear submarines by 2040 is a case of too little, too late and a rapid solution is needed now.
"The Government should immediately move to procure at least six military-off-the-shelf conventional submarines, to be built in Adelaide with workers left idle from the schedule failures on the submarine and future frigate programs. Australian industry should be engaged, post build, to enhance the proven design in a controlled and managed manner," Senator Patrick wrote in his recommendations.