The Royal Australian Navy was negotiating to overcome a delay in full operational capability for its two big amphibious ships, and that included possible cost recovery, federal MPs have been told.
Parliament’s joint committee of public accounts and audit was inquiring into the 2016-17 defence major projects annual report issued by the Australian National Audit Office.
The committee also heard that the Defence Department’s project to integrate civilian and military air-traffic control systems had needed a projected cost increase of $243 million.
Among other projects reviewed were the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter being made in the US, and the army’s availability-challenged Tiger armed reconnaissance helicopters.
The major projects report, which was released in January, examined 27 defence projects costing a total of about $62 billion.
The capability status of the two amphibious ships, or landing helicopter docks, which are worth a total of about $3bn, was revealed during questioning by a committee member, opposition assistant spokeswoman for defence personnel Gai Brodtmann, to public servants about schedule slippage in major projects.
Ms Brodtmann asked why slippage, or failing to meet deadlines, seemed “to be getting worse” — from about 1 per cent to 6 per cent. (end of excerpt)
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