Australian Maritime College – Next Steps

NTDC’s Board Chair John Pitt made comments today in relation to the Federal Government’s commitment to AMC.

Mr Pitt agreed with that it was highly desirable to secure a meeting with Federal Minister Christopher Pyne before the end of the first week in May, and outlined his view as to the next steps in securing the future of the AMC as follows:

Mr Pitt said that …

“Firstly, it is highly desirable to secure an enduring ‘No Compete Agreement’ between the AMC and the new defence shipbuilding college announced in South Australia.

This agreement should formally recognise the preeminent nature of the research capability, the degree and PhD level education functions, and international status of the AMC.

It should also confirm that the new college will not compete for the provision of defence services in those areas of AMC competence.

Such an agreement would eliminate the significant skepticism held in Northern Tasmania over the recent announcement.

The second step is to ensure that a comprehensive feasibility study is directed at establishing how the AMC should grow its Newnham campus and that this piece of work should be delivered as a high priority early in the City Deal implementation program.

Governments and Ministers change over time. Therefore, whilst a verbal commitment from the Minister is welcome and necessary, it is insufficient to allay the current skepticism held by the regions leaders. A formal ‘No Compete’ agreement signed by the institutions and endorsed by the City Deal signatories would address that skepticism.

Tasmania aspires to and deserves a more significant slice of the defence program spend than it currently wins. The AMC is a key competitive strength for both the defence sector and for Tasmania’s economy. This should be recognized by finding ways and means to expand its current capability through the establishment of a Defence Innovation and Design Precinct at the AMC Newnham campus.”

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