17 May 2023

Earlier today the Minister for Defence Industry, Hon. Pat Conroy MP was in Bendigo this to announce a new Government contact for Thales Australia. manufacturing facility in Bendigo.

The Albanese Government has secured local jobs in Bendigo with a $160 million contract to manufacture additional Bushmaster vehicles for the Australian Defence Force.

The 78 new protected mobility vehicles will strengthen the capability of the Australian Army, with first delivery expected in 2024.

The Government is committed to regional industry and jobs, ensuring the production of Bushmasters in Bendigo at the Thales Australia facility, which was otherwise set to close in June.

Bushmasters are integral to Australian Army operations. They protected and saved the lives of Australian soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan and are currently protecting Ukrainian soldiers.

The cutting-edge protected mobility vehicle built in Bendigo is one of Australia’s best defence industry and export success stories.

Defence received the first Bushmaster in 2003 and 20 years later Bendigo continues to provide Australian soldiers with this important capability. 

Quotes attributable to Lisa Chesters MP:

“I was proud (and a little relieved) to welcome Minister Pat Conroy back to Bendigo today for his announcement that will help secure local defence industry jobs for the city.

“The iconic Bushmaster vehicle is supporting defence industry jobs in Australia, as well as saving lives in military operations around the world.

“Bendigo has a long relationship with Defence and a proud Defence manufacturing history.

“This extension of production is not only tremendous news for the ADF, but the hardworking people of Bendigo, who will continue to provide this important capability for soldiers from Australia and around the world.

“I’m proud to be a member of the Albanese Government which is delivering jobs for Bendigo and supporting our local economy.”