Skip to main content

Contact an investment specialist Let's talk business

Australia is building a robust, resilient and globally competitive defence industry to support an agile and capable Australian Defence Force. 

Robotics, Autonomous Systems and Artificial Intelligence Report

The 2022 report analyses Australian expertise in emerging defence technologies. It includes a RASAI capabilities matrix that covers 49 Australian companies.

Read our report


Australian Defence Cyber Industry Capability Report

Australia’s defence cyber industry is growing quickly. To highlight our industry capabilities, Austrade has created Australia’s first Defence Cyber Industry Capability report.

Read our report


Defence is a priority sector under the Australian Government’s A$15 billion National Reconstruction Fund, which will provide a financing vehicle to drive investment in projects that improve competitiveness and growth, boost economic security, support regional economic development, and revive Australia’s ability to make world-class products.

Under the 2020 Force Structure Plan, we’re investing A$270 billion in defence capability over the next 10 years. We’re also making an unprecedented investment of A$9.9 billion over 10 years in Australia’s national intelligence and cyber capabilities. These significant investments will flow through to Australian industry, creating jobs and enhancing skills.

The Defence National Manufacturing Priority road map seeks to grow scale and competitiveness in the defence manufacturing sector by:

  • increasing commercialisation opportunities
  • supporting businesses to diversify into new sectors or markets
  • aggregating their capacities and expertise.

The Defence National Manufacturing Priority road map sets the direction for future growth and expansion and proposes ways government and industry can work together to scale-up manufacturing activities, access global supply chains and grow jobs.


Defence force using VR
Supplied by the Australian Department of Defence.

Priority investment areas

  • A$168–183 billion in naval shipbuilding
  • A$75 billion in maritime
  • A$65 billion in air
  • A$55 billion in land
  • A$15 billion in information and cyber
  • A$7 billion in space.
photo of woman in front of flags
As a Defence scientist, I collaborate with world-leading experts across Australia and internationally, working together to develop novel science and technology to safeguard Australia and its national interests.

This is an exciting time for scientists, engineers and researchers in Australia from all cultural backgrounds. With access to world-class facilities and research, international collaboration, a great work-life balance and, of course, the wonderful and vibrant Australian lifestyle, I hope you will join us.
Crystal Forrester
Aerospace and Digital Engineer, Department of Defence

Investing in emerging technologies

Australia is empowering the development of cutting edge innovations that will enhance our defence capability by investing A$1.2 billion through the Next Generation Technologies Fund (NGTF) and over A$1 billion in funding to 2030 through the Defence Innovation Hub.

The NGTF is creating opportunities for partnerships between industry, academia and government to deliver future-focused defence technologies including:

  • sensors and analytics
  • advanced materials
  • robotics and automation
  • additive manufacturing
  • augmented and virtual reality.

We want more of these prosperous collaborations. Our national science agency, CSIRO, cooperative research centres (CRCs) and other academic institutions are always looking for partners.

The Defence Hub is always looking for new ideas that could have a defence application and seeks submissions for innovations that will strengthen defence capability in areas of strategic importance. Industry and research organisations can submit proposals via the Hub website. Submissions are open 365 days a year for Australian and New Zealand businesses and research organisations (with an ABN or NZBN).

  • Australia’s defence industry sector employs over 80,000 people
  • Top defence export markets: US, UK, EU, New Zealand and Canada

A world-leading defence exporter

We’re looking to grow our existing defence exports, currently worth around A$2 billion. To do this, we’re welcoming strategic partners to help us build a stronger, more sustainable and more globally competitive industry and pursue defence export opportunities.

By bringing your business, ideas, knowledge and skills here, you’ll play a vital role in making this happen and share in the rewards. You’ll find advocacy and support through the Australian Defence Export Office, which coordinates whole-of-government efforts to support the export success of Australian defence industry.

Some of our defence exports

  • More than 50 companies share more than A$1.7 billion in contracts as part of the global Joint Strike Fighter Program investment.
  • Thales Australia Bushmaster Protected Mobility Vehicles, designed and built in Australia, are used by a number of countries including Fiji, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Ukraine and the United Kingdom.
  • Austal has secured a contract worth over US$70 million with the Government of Trinidad and Tobago to purchase two Austal Cape Class Patrol Boats, supported by a loan from the Defence Export Facility.
  • Australia is working with the US Department of Defense to create sensors and decoys for naval fleets.


Defence Australia - Bushmaster
Supplied by the Australian Department of Defence.

Incentives, grants and support

The Defence National Manufacturing Priority road map identifies opportunities for defence manufacturers in:

  • military vehicle manufacturing
  • aircraft manufacturing
  • naval shipbuilding
  • marine hardware production
  • 3D printing
  • explosives and propellants.

The Office of Defence Industry Support (ODIS) supports small business to connect, build, innovate and export in the defence industry.

The Australian Tax Office’s New Investment Engagement Service gives tailored guidance on tax issues to businesses planning significant new investments in Australia.

Case studies

Norseld worked closely with the Centre for Defence Industry Capability (now known as the Office of Defence Industry Support) to develop laser technology for F-35s.


Defence Industry Factsheet

Contact an investment specialist Let's talk business