The Advance Verification Team of the AUKUS trilateral security alliance of Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States has completed a two-week tour of the British Royal Navy’s Faslane, Scotland, nuclear submarine base to support Australian nuclear submarine maintenance capability buildup.
According to the UK government, the AVT’s Faslane familiarization followed a similar visit to Hawaii’s U.S. Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard in August. On both visits, the AVT members sought to understand and develop the necessary support skills for an Australia-based maintenance facility for U.S. and UK nuclear submarines operating in the Indo-Pacific for regional security and global stability.
Earlier in March, the Australian Department of Defence announced that the government is developing an AUKUS Submarine Workforce and Industry Strategy to support the delivery of advanced conventionally armed nuclear-powered submarines to the Australian Defence Force.
The strategy and AVT’s activities are parallel with plans to build the first generation AUKUS nuclear submarines in the United Kingdom and Australia.
To be called SSN-AUKUS submarines, the submersible nuclear warships will be based on the U.K.’s submarine design.
According to a Reuters report, a $4.9 billion UK contract has already been awarded to BAE Systems as part of the AUKUS submarine production program.