The Australian government has awarded the $3 billion contract for two of the Royal Australian Navy's new landing ships to a consortium of Spanish firm Navantia and Tenix in Victoria. The hulls based on F100 design will be built in Spain and transported to Williamstown for the ships' completion. The contract is expected to add 500 jobs to the 1000-strong workforce, with the ships scheduled to be in service by 2012.
The contract is part of a navy upgrade that includes the $8 billion construction of three warships in Adelaide. The projected cost of the five ships is $3 billion more than slated last year in the Defence Department's 10-year "capability plan". After the commissioning of a New Zealand Navy ship at Station Pier last month, which Tenix fitted out as part of a seven-vessel contract, shipbuilding in this state looks to be on a steady course.