(From AFP)

Three international bidders are seeking a contract worth up to Aus$50 billion (US$36 billion) to build a next-generation submarine fleet for Australia, it was confirmed Monday.

Australian navy subs
Australian navy subs

Submissions have been received from DCNS of France, Germany’s TKMS and the Japanese government, Australia’s Defence Minister Marise Payne announced as the deadline closed.

The contract is to replace the nation’s current diesel and electric-powered Collins Class submarines.

Besides matching their range and endurance, the next generation of subs are expected to offer superior sensor performance and stealth capabilities.

The tender process has been politically sensitive, with Canberra keen to maximise Australian industry involvement and jobs. There are fears that any off-the-shelf purchase could kill off the domestic shipbuilding industry.

Payne said in a statement the assessment of the bids “will include the level of Australian industry involvement that will be possible under each option”.

In Tokyo a defence ministry official said Japan’s proposal includes plans to build the submarines in Australia.

The official said Tokyo was “confident” its bid would win but disclosed no details. Read more

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