14/12/2015 - 15:56

Builders sharpen sub pitches

14/12/2015 - 15:56

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German shipbuilder ThyssenKrupp is continuing to advance its case for the federal government’s upcoming submarine contract, worth around $20 billion, partnering with Civmec to build a small demonstration hull in Perth.

Civmec has facilities at the Australia Marine Complex near Henderson.

German shipbuilder ThyssenKrupp is continuing to advance its case for the federal government’s upcoming submarine contract, worth around $20 billion, partnering with Civmec to build a small demonstration hull in Perth.

At six metres in diametre and two metres deep, such a piece could be welded into a larger series to complete the vessel.

The model was engineered in ThyssenKrupp’s home yard in Germany, digitally transmitted to Perth and constructed by Civmec at the Australian Marine Complex in Henderson.

That meant costs and time would be saved sending out engineers, with the companies saying it proved geography wouldn’t be a substantial risk factor.

Both companies were confident that an assembly could be fully undertaken in Perth, with ThyssenKrupp Australian chairman John White saying the company’s preference was for an Australian build.

He said the company had built more than 100 submarines for a variety of different countries and could replicate those operations here in Australia.

Civmec had built vessels that could withstand similar pressure environments for the oil and gas industry, Dr White said.

He said the cost differential between Perth and Adelaide would be minimal, while less than 20 per cent of the cost of a hull assembly would be wages and labour costs.

It follows the company’s public interest in acquiring the Australian Submarine Corporation from the federal government in a potential privatisation.

Meanwhile, Defence Minister Marise Payne is expected to visit Perth on Wednesday, stoking some tensions with South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill, who claimed Western Australia has only become interested in the defence industry due to the end of the mining boom.

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

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