Germany is ready to build all 12 subs for half the price Australia is budgeting.
Hans Atzpodien, chairman of ThysennKrupp Marine Systems told Australia’s National Press Club Thursday that “the Germans could build all 12 subs in Australia for AU$20 billion (US $15.2 billion), less than half the cost that Australia is budgeting for.”
Hans also described the Japanese bid as choice for Australia between its relationship with China, its biggest trading partner, and Japan, its second-biggest partner.
“Maybe it is an advantage dealing with us not to be in a position where you have to — let’s say — decide between certain heavyweights of the Pacific area,” Atzpodien was quoted as saying by JapanTimes news daily.
Japan contends that if Australia selects Japan to build it submarine, it will enhance maritime security in the Asia-Pacific region and counter China’s military buildup in the East and South China seas.
Besides ThysennKrupp Marine Systems, Japan’s Mitsubishi and French company DCNS are in the running to build 12 conventional submarines that the Australian navy expects will cost at least 56 billion Australian dollars ($43 billion).
The government expects to award the contract this year, with Japan regarded as a favorite early in the bidding process due to its close military relationship with Australia and the United States. The submarine deal would be Japan’s first fully fledged military technology transfer since World War II.