Jobs will be a focus of a major conference, the 4th Submarine Science, Technology and Engineering Conference (SubSTEC4), to be opened by Premier Jay Weatherill at the Adelaide Convention Centre today.

Having fought to secure the $50 billion Future Submarine program, South Australia is now exploring how the local workforce can benefit from the thousands of jobs set to flow from this and other naval shipbuilding projects.

Hosted by the Submarine Institute of Australia (SIA), around 250 international and local delegates will attend the three-day event. Industry representatives, government officials and researchers will discuss issues including the importance of Australia creating a sovereign submarine capability, workforce development and research, development opportunities and the transfer of sensitive technology.

The State Government has been exploring ways SA can build a strong workforce and create supply chain opportunities for the upcoming $50 billion Future Submarine program, which will create an estimated 2800 jobs in South Australia.


Emerging technologies and workforce development will be the focus of this year’s SubSTEC4, the leading forum in the Asia-Pacific region for information-sharing and debate on submarine issues.

The conference, involves a full-day of industry and academia tours on Monday, 13 November, followed by three days of jobs and tech-focused presentations such as cyber security challenges, vessel inspection robots and expanding and developing the shipbuilding workforce.

Construction of Australia’s 12 new submarines will start at the Osborne Naval Shipyard in 2022. The construction of the future submarine fleet is expected to sustain around 1100 jobs in direct build and around 1700 jobs through the supply chain.

Quotes attributable to Defence and Space Industries Minister Martin Hamilton-Smith

In April last year, backed by local industry, we had another important victory with the announcement that 12 new submarines will be built in Adelaide. This is a significant step towards the transformation of South Australia’s economy away from traditional manufacturing towards hi-tech manufacturing.

We fought for a local build when it looked like the submarines would be built overseas and we won. We have secured an industry not just a project and we are supporting careers, not just jobs.

This SIA event is an important conference, especially as we move closer towards the commencement of the Future Submarine program here in South Australia. South Australia is a hub for next-generation defence science and technologies, which will be a key part of major defence and shipbuilding projects.

Our State is recognised as Australia’s home of naval shipbuilding in an industry which is crucial to our economic development and attracting investment, driving innovation and creating jobs of the future.

Our attention has been and continues to be focused on the high-tech advanced manufacturing job opportunities that will flow on from this future shipbuilding program, which will be pivotal to transitioning the State’s economy.

We advocate strongly for Australian industry involvement in the upcoming $80 billion worth of naval shipbuilding programs, and support our local industry in their efforts to gain work in the global supply chain.