Lisa Chesters MP welcomes news that Australian Defence Apparel in Bendigo has been awarded the first five-year contract for the $170 million LAND 125 project.
LAND 125 was announced in Labor’s 2009 Defence Capability Plan which aimed to develop and acquire an enhanced close combat capability for the Australian Army.
ADA will supply of load carriage equipment including ballistic plate carriers, packs, basic pouches and equipment bags.
“We are delighted with the announcement by Government that this long standing project is going ahead,” Ms Chesters said.
“ADA is a successful long-term manufacturer for Defence and today, Australian soldiers deployed on peace keeping, conflict resolution or combat missions are equipped with combat uniforms and innovative body armour systems developed and supplied exclusively by ADA.
“Most Australians would agree that their tax-paying dollars should be spent on defence materials manufactured in Australia, supporting local businesses and securing local jobs.
“This project is vitally important, not only for direct jobs at ADA and its suppliers, but for Bendigo’s economy as a whole, of which defence manufacturing is a major component.”
Ms Chesters said Bendigo has had a long association with defence manufacturing.
“Defence manufacturing in Bendigo certainly has a proud history and, we hope, a promising and successful future,” she said.
“We need the Department of Defence contract for 1300 Hawkei combat vehicles to continue this legacy of defence manufacturing in Bendigo well into the future.
“The importance of the Hawkei defence contract to Bendigo is huge.”