Australia will be the site of Boeing’s first final assembly site outside North America. The project will create around 300 jobs during construction.
First military combat aircraft made in Australia in 50 years
The facility will be at the Wellcamp Aerospace and Defence Precinct. The Precinct is at Wellcamp Airport in Toowoomba, Queensland.
It will produce and assemble the unmanned Loyal Wingman aircraft, subject to defence orders. It is the first military combat aircraft designed, developed and made in Australia in 50 years. The aircraft made its first flight in February 2021.
The unmanned aircraft uses artificial intelligence and teams with other aircraft to extend their capabilities.
Boeing says it selected Australia because of the country’s growing sovereign defence capability, supply chain and export opportunities.
‘We are confident in the future production outlook for this world-class, innovative aircraft,’ says Boeing Defence Australia Vice President and Managing Director Scott Carpendale.
‘We’re thinking long-term about this investment,’ he says. ‘[It] could assist Australia to gain future work share in other global defence and aerospace opportunities.’
Boeing Australia is also developing 6 aircraft in partnership with the Royal Australian Air Force.
Boeing project supports Queensland’s defence ambitions
The Boeing project is part of the Queensland Defence Industries 10-year Roadmap and Action Plan. The Plan aims to increase defence revenue and generate 3,500 new full-time jobs by 2028.
The Boeing project could generate up to A$1 billion for Queensland’s economy over 10 years.
‘This has the potential to greatly improve our state’s advanced manufacturing capability,’ says Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk.’ [It will also] help shape a workforce of Queenslanders with the skills to build some of the world’s most cutting-edge aircraft.’
Boeing was one of the first users of the Queensland Flight Test Range. Located at Cloncurry Airport, the unmanned aerial systems test facility is the first of its kind in Australia. Boeing used the facility to test its advanced autonomy project including brain-on-board technology.
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