East Coast Submarine Base

Three locations have been shortlisted as potential sites for a new naval base to be built to support Australia’s next-generation nuclear-powered submarine fleet.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has announced plans to develop a new naval base on Australia’s east coast to support the operation of the Royal Australian Navy’s future nuclear-powered submarines promised under the AUKUS agreement.

The new base is expected to include specialised wharfs; maintenance facilities; administrative and logistics support; personal amenities; and suitable accommodation for submarine crews and support staff, including visitors.

Brisbane, Newcastle and Port Kembla have been shortlisted among 19 locations reviewed by the government.

The Commonwealth government is reportedly favouring development in Wollongong’s Port Kembla, as outlined in a submission to the cabinet’s National Security Committee.

However, according to the PM, all three locations meet many of the criteria needed to support Australia’s strategic objectives, including:

  • close proximity to sufficient industrial infrastructure that could support the complex demands of maintaining and preparing high-tech submarines in an efficient and affordable manner;
  • close proximity to large population centres to attract recruits and retain the substantially larger uniformed submarine workforce needed to crew and support future submarines;
  • reasonably approximate to primary maritime training and operational areas to deep water and to weapons storage and loading facilities; and
  • provide strategic depths as far as possible for potential threats and support the mounting and sustaining of operations.

Defence has commenced consultations with the NSW and Queensland governments, as well as relevant local authorities.

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  • Warren Thatcher March 8, 2022  

    What a waste of time and money.
    PORT KEMBLA is the only place.

  • Doc Watson March 11, 2022  

    Concur Port Kembla. Ask any Navy person about the time it takes to enter the port of Brisbane.

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