Deputy Premier, Minister for
Trade and Investment and Minister for Regional Infrastructure Services Andrew
Stoner has congratulated Thales Australia’s
Lithgow-based soldier systems manufacturing facility on reaching its 100-year
Stoner said the Lithgow
facility, which is a major manufacturer of rifles for Australian soldiers, has
a long and proud history in NSW.
“The Lithgow factory opened in
1912, manufacturing rifles and bayonets for the Australian military during
World War I.
They were also crucial
supporters of the war effort during World War II, expanding production to
include Vickers machine guns and Bren guns.
Today, the expanded Lithgow
facility manufactures the state-of-the art F88 SA2 Austeyr rifle, and supports
other weapons currently used by the Australian military," said Stoner.
“It is also involved in the
development of an enhanced rifle known as the EF88, which will represent a
significant upgrade for the Australian Defence Force," Stoner added.
Member for Bathurst Paul Toole
joined Mr Stoner in congratulating Thales.
”Not many facilities in Australia can boast of manufacturing a product
continuously for 100 years, and Thales Australia is to be congratulated for its
ongoing efforts in maintaining and expanding the Lithgow facility’s output,” Toole said.
Chief Executive Officer Chris Jenkins said the Lithgow facility’s ability to
manufacture, maintain and upgrade infantry weapons made it a strategic national
asset central to Australia’s
“We are proud that this facility can mark its 100-year anniversary still
ensuring Australian soldiers have some of the best infantry weapons available
in the world, and I congratulate all our past and present employees for their
dedication over many years,” Chris said