SingaporeThe Australian Ministry of Defence (MoD) recently signed a $24.5 million deal with Lockheed Martin Australia to bolster its defence capabilities by locally manufacturing Guided Multiple Launch Rocket Systems (GMLRS) munitions. The missile deal is expected to boost the country’s area denial capabilities, according to GlobalData, a data and analytics company.

GlobalData’s “The Global Military Ammunition Market Forecast 2023–2033” report reveals that Australia will spend about $4.1 billion on procuring various ammunition over the next ten years. Out of which, 9.2% of spending will be directed towards the procurement of rocket ammunition. The strategic agreement with Lockheed Martin can be seen in the context of the country’s efforts to achieve area denial capabilities against hostile forces.

Harsh Deshmukh, Aerospace & Defense Analyst at GlobalData, comments: “The significance of this agreement extends beyond bolstering the domestic manufacturing capacity of GMLRS for the country. Australia will also be able to achieve economies of scale through in-house manufacturing, which will facilitate faster acquisition of these munitions, enabling prompt deployment during combat situations. Such capability will allow Australia to counter any unprecedented Chinese aggression in the Indo-Pacific region more effectively.”

The GMLRS munitions will be used by the Australian Army’s High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS), which was procured as part of another deal worth $154 million signed in May 2022. The agreement with Lockheed Martin is a significant step towards achieving domestic production of rocket ammunition in Australia on a much larger scale.

Deshmukh concludes: “Fostering domestic manufacturing of munitions in Australia holds the potential to catalyze the growth of a robust local vendor ecosystem, allowing them to propel technological advancements and innovation. As tensions continue to persist between the US and China, the Australian armed forces’ preparedness level becomes a crucial factor in ensuring regional security. Rapid deployment of locally produced GMLRS munitions will certainly contribute in this regard.”


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