Australia is committed to closing a perceived capability gap through domestically produced submarines, just as the regional security challenge is compounded by its tense relationship with China.
The ageing fleet of Collins-class submarines is set to receive life-of-type extensions. Still, because the US- or British-supplied nuclear-powered submarines are not expected in Australian waters until 2040, a stopgap is needed.
Richard Marles said that a gap in capability would be filled by Australian-built submarines. However, the acting prime minister and defence minister said that we need to fill the gap.
Last week, Sir Angus said the security situation was the worst he had ever seen.