For the first time, Australia’s defence industry has been incorporated into INDO-PACIFIC ENDEAVOUR port visits.
The most recent engagement was on board HMAS Canberra at Changi Navy Base, Singapore, during INDO-PACIFIC ENDEAVOUR 2019 (IPE19).
Under the initiative, the Australian Defence Export Office (ADEO) together with the IPE19 Joint Task Force (JTF) showcases some of the prized outputs of Australian defence industry to host nations while industry representatives champion their products and services. Military members also provide their perspectives and practical operational experience in support of defence industry.
JTF staff officer Squadron Leader Steven Rae has facilitated the exhibitions and said the collaboration involved a lot of planning.
“The goal of the Defence Export Expo is to achieve greater export successes, making Australia’s defence industry globally competitive, all in support of better capability for the Australian Defence Force. This aligns with the Defence Export Strategy,” Squadron Leader Rae said.
“From Canberra, I coordinate between the ADEO, various Defence attachés and other government agencies in each country we plan to visit, starting two or three months before we are due to arrive.
“Our team then briefs the executives of all the ships attached to the task group, and then, on arrival, assists in the execution of the plan for that port.”
He said Australian defence export capabilities and services were displayed during the official reception on boardCanberra to maximise exposure and interest.
“For example, the owners of Wanachi, a mobile water purification system designed to withstand the harshest of conditions to produce fresh drinking water direct from source, were on display in Singapore,” he said.
“This innovative product can potentially save money and resources for Australian Defence Force (ADF) personnel while on deployments, so naturally other defence organisations are interested.”
Other equipment included the Hawkei and Bushmaster Protected Mobility Vehicles, an EF88 Advanced Steyr from Thales Australia, DroneShield’s drone gun, the Soldier Combat Ensemble from Australian Defence Apparel, and products from Aspen Medical, which delivers health services to the ADF.
“This is a great new initiative that illustrates the diversity of thinking that has gone into IPE19,” Squadron Leader Rae said.
“I’ve really enjoyed discussing future capabilities and people power with our regional partners. Our relationships with our neighbours matters.”
IPE19 is on the home stretch back to Australia after a successful three-month engagement with regional partners.