Ipswich Mayor Andrew Antoniolli was amazed by a recent visit the Royal Australian Air Force Base at Amberley and TAE Aerospace.
Cr Antoniolli, Acting CEO Gary Kellar and senior Council representatives were on hand to inspect the aerial firepower and work going on terra firma.
The City of Ipswich is home to Australia’s largest Air Force base and with significant financial commitment from Canberra, massive expansion is planned there, with an additional 7000 jobs by 2020 adding $1.2 billion to the State economy.
Cr Antoniolli said in the next few years the RAAF Base will experience major growth in infrastructure and sustainment, which will have flow on economic growth for Ipswich and greater Brisbane.
Defence activity in the Ipswich region already contributes to around 3 per cent of total Gross Regional Product and almost 4 per cent of all jobs in the region.
Ipswich is the second largest destination of leading defence contractors in Queensland after Brisbane, enabling Ipswich’s local SMEs to supply to defence industry in Australia and in exports.
The City has industry champions such as TAE Aerospace, an Ipswich based company supplying to major defence contractors and now gaining access to new international markets.
TAE Aerospace received the Queensland Premier’s Defence Export Award in October 2017. The company also received an Ipswich Chamber of Commerce Business Award in October 2017.
Cr Antoniolli, Economic Development and Digital City Committee Chairman Cr Paul Tully and Mr Kellar recently hosted representatives from the Australian Defence Force, Federal, State and Local Governments, universities, defence firms and industry specialists in a think-tank exercise.
“This was an excellent opportunity to have key stakeholders in the one room, working towards the common goal of positioning Ipswich as a true Defence Industry advocate,” the Mayor said.
“As our Defence footprint continues to grow, it’s the perfect time to move forward as one to maximise all opportunities.”
Cr Antoniolli said Defence directly contributed to more than 5000 jobs and almost $100 million to the Ipswich economy in 2016-17.
“Defence is a key industry for the City of Ipswich. The region hosts Australia’s largest operational Air Force Base, Amberley, with substantial space for development to accommodate further Defence activity.
“Ipswich is also the second largest destination for Defence contractors to locate in Queensland after Brisbane, and has a great eco system with capable defence industry, locations and research organisations to cater for current and future growth for the city and state.
“Defence’s presence and activity in Ipswich stimulates economic activity across defence industries in the region and state, and across other industries along the supply chain.”
Council’s Office of Economic Development has recognised the Defence sector as an emerging powerhouse in the region in terms of jobs and financial growth.
The Federal Government moves closer to announcing the $5 billion Defence contract, which will hopefully see Rheinmetall successful and see it build its military vehicle centre of excellence in Ipswich and the next model of armoured vehicles for Australian forces.
New Defence Industry Minister Christopher Pyne also noted that RAAF Amberley is a significant driver of Queensland’s economy. Canberra has committed to boosting Amberley with an additional 7000 jobs by 2020, with a boost to the state economy of $1.2 billion.
Mr Pyne spoke of a boom in the Queensland Defence Industry, with Ipswich at the forefront.
Defence Industry Seminars:
The Centre for Defence Industry Capability (CDIC) is hosting a seminar series for businesses that are seeking business opportunities in the Defence market.
he seminar series – Introduction to the Defence Market – will be delivered by an experienced Advisory Services team.
For further information on Industry Development initiatives, contact Tamanna Monem at ICC’s Office of Economic Development at Business@ipswich.qld.gov.au
Stakeholders should also check this link at attend a special Defence seminar.: