ASC Shipbuilding has signed a contract with professional services company GHD Group to aid the prototyping of the Hunter Class Frigate at the Osborne South Shipyard.

This marks another milestone in the Australian Government Hunter Class Frigate Program. It is expected to create 40 additional job opportunities.

Minister for Defence Linda Reynolds said: “This contract will create jobs at the Osborne South Shipyard, where the navy’s nine Hunter-class anti-submarine warfare frigates will be built.

“These engineers will form part of the broader shipbuilding workforce that is expected to grow to more than 6,000 by 2030 to support a sovereign shipbuilding industry.

“The shipbuilding workforce is at the forefront of modern naval ship design and construction, driving a digital transformation of Australia’s advanced manufacturing and engineering sectors.”

Minister for Defence Industry Melissa Price added that the engineers for the project will work across different disciplines, such as structural, outfit, layout and electrical.

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Price added: “This is just the latest round of jobs that the Hunter-class programme has created following their intake of 18 apprentices in July this year.

“The creation of these jobs complements the work ASC Shipbuilding are doing to upskill their current workforce to work on the Hunter class program through their Diploma of Digital Technology.”

The government and ASC Shipbuilding plan to boost the Australian Industry Content in the Hunter Class Frigate Program in the lead up to prototyping, which is due to begin this year-end.

Last month, the government launched a feasibility study to explore the locally manufactured main reduction gearboxes for the upcoming Hunter batches.

In June this year, ASC Shipbuilding sought suppliers for the Australian Hunter Class Frigate Program.