BAE Systems welcomes collaboration opportunities under the Australia-UK FTA

17 December 2021

‘We think the FTA will strengthen the already close ties between the two nations' defence industries, for which there are increasing cross-border opportunities.’

Dr Charles Woodburn, Group Chief Executive, BAE Systems

BAE Systems is a significant partner to the governments of both the UK and Australia in the defence, aerospace and security sector. The company has a global skilled workforce of around 89,000. It employs over 35,000 people in the UK and 5,000 in Australia. These people produce and support some of the world’s most advanced technologies, including the:

  • Hawk Advanced Jet Trainer
  • F-35 Joint Strike Fighter aircraft
  • Type 26 Global Combat Ship (known as the Hunter Class in Australia).

BAE Systems’ advanced capabilities and technologies protect people, national security and keep critical information and infrastructure secure. These critical programs benefit from technology, skills and knowledge transfer between the UK and Australia. They also support supply chain collaboration between the two nations.

For example, BAE Systems has supported 9 Australian companies to export over A$6 million in products, services and materials into the UK’s Type 26, Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carrier and submarine programs.

Australian Hunter Class frigate, BAE Systems

Australian Hunter Class frigate, BAE Systems

BAE Systems is supportive of an enhanced bilateral trade and investment relationship between the UK and Australia. It welcomes the opportunities that the FTA will afford for greater collaboration on new technologies, innovation, and research and development.

BAE Systems also welcomes the commitment to the inclusion of a world-first innovation chapter and establishment of a Strategic Innovation Dialogue as a mechanism under the FTA to drive further collaboration in this area.

BAE Systems Group Chief Executive Dr Charles Woodburn says, ‘We think the FTA will strengthen the already close ties between the two nations' defence industries, for which there are increasing cross-border opportunities.

‘We anticipate the FTA will further promote technology transfer and innovation exchanges between governments, business and academia, including through enhanced skilled migration and talent attraction.’

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