Lo­cal com­pany beats Boe­ing for $ 21m main­te­nance deal Chi­nook con­tract

Townsville Bulletin - - News - by Emily Mac­don­ald emily. mac­don­ald@ townsville­bul­letin. com. au

A GLOBAL de­fence avi­a­tion com­pany has been awarded a $ 20.9 mil­lion con­tract to main­tain the Aus­tralian De­fence Force fleet of Chi­nook he­li­copters with the Townsville arm of the busi­ness to carry out the work.

M i n i s t e r f o r D e f e n c e Ma­teriel Ja­son Clare an­nounced yes­ter­day a six-year con­tract to main­tain and s u p p o r t t h e T o wns v i l l e - based he­li­copters – with op­tions to ex­tend the ten­der for up to 20 years – had been signed be­tween the ADF and BAE Sys­tems Aus­tralia.

The win­ning con­trac­tor will have to pro­vide sched­uled and un­sched­uled main­te­nance, re­pairs, en­gi­neer- ing and ser­vices.

BAE have held the Chi­nook main­te­nance con­tract since 1995 but it was put out to competition and the com­pany had to out­per­form a num­ber of ten­ders in­clud­ing one from the he­li­copters’ man­u­fac­tur­ers Boe­ing.

They also won a $ 240 mil­lion con­tract in De­cem­ber 2 0 0 9 t o m a i n t a i n t h e Townsville-based f l eet of Black Hawks and the Navy Sea­hawks based in Nowra.

There are cur­rently six CH47D Chi­nooks op­er­ated by the army’s 5th Avi­a­tion Reg­i­ment in Townsville.

BAE com­mer­cial man­ager Alan Wylie said the Chi­nook con­tract would ce­ment the c o m p a n y ’ s p o s i t i o n i n Townsville.

‘‘ It gives us a re­ally good foothold here in Townsville,’’ he said.

lo­gis­tics

sup­port through to the end of the lifeof-type of this air­craft in ADF ser­vice and the low­est pos­si­ble tran­si­tion risk for in­tro­duc­tion of the Chi­nook CH-47F air­craft,’’ he said.

Mr Clare said Chi­nooks were an im­por­tant part of the De­fence Force’s re­sponse to nat­u­ral dis­as­ters such as the Queens­land floods.

‘‘ They trans­ported the Red Cross, the Sal­va­tion Army and emer­gency ser­vice work­ers as well as food and shel­ters into places like Con­damine,’’ he said.

‘‘ They have also been supp o r t i n g o u r t r o o p s i n Afghanistan in re­cent times pro­vid­ing lo­gis­ti­cal sup­port and mov­ing com­bat units into battle.

‘‘ None of this hap­pens if they aren’t well-main­tained.

‘‘ BAE Sys­tems Aus­tralia’s bid rep­re­sented the best value for money.’’

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