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Thales and Rheinmetall team up to support Aussie Land 400 programme

5th October 2021 - 16:30 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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The Boxer CRV programme is worth A$5.9 billion in total. (Photo: Rheinmetall)

Thales Australia will manufacture components for the Rheinmetall MK 30-2 30mm cannon that will equip the Boxer CRV.

The Australian Minister for Defence Industry Melissa Price and the Minister for Veteran’s Affairs Andrew Gee announced on 28 September a new manufacturing partnership between Rheinmetall Defence Australia and Thales Australia to support the Land 400 Phase 2 programme.

Thales Australia’s Lithgow facility in New South Wales has commenced manufacturing components for the Rheinmetall MK 30-2 30mm cannon that will equip the Boxer CRV.

According to Thales, this partnership will provide substantial technology transfer to Australia in support of a number of defence projects with a target of 100% Australian Industry Capability.

It ‘will be a significant driver of growth in sovereign capability, boosting investment in SMEs, R&D and delivering long-term jobs,’ the press release noted.

The joint effort will also look at transferring to Australia the manufacture and sustainment of a range of mounted weapons, combining Thales Australia’s manufacturing expertise and domestic supplier base with Rheinmetall’s mounted weapons.

As Thales pointed out, approximately 50% of the work in Lithgow facility will be done by SME suppliers, and the overall Australian Industrial Capability is already over 85%.

The first samples manufactured in Australia have already passed quality control checks by Rheinmetall Defence in Germany.

Shephard Defence Insight notes that Land 400 Phase 2 is the largest and most expensive project in the history of the Australian Army.

In total, the programme is worth A$5.879 billion ($3.912 billion), which covers both procurement of Boxer platforms and initial sustainment costs.

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