The Government of New South Wales (NSW) will establish a maritime capability hub in an effort to secure over $300bn worth of proposed defence upgrades from the Commonwealth.

Premier Kristina Keneally announced the plan, which will use key sites including Sydney, Newcastle and Nowra at the Pacific 2010 International Maritime Exposition in Darling Harbour.

According to the premier, the maritime capability hub will be established using more than 80 defence bases across the state including Sydney’s already well-established naval facilities.

A total of 12 new submarines to replace the troubled Collins Class subs, six new helicopters and weapons enhancements for three new destroyers are among the upgrades for the Australian Navy in accordance with the new defence plan.

Plans to develop the defence industry also includes the creation of air combat capability hubs in Newcastle and the Hunter region.