• Telstra's stand at MilCIS 2017. Credit: ADM Patrick Durrant
    Telstra's stand at MilCIS 2017. Credit: ADM Patrick Durrant

Defence has signed a contract with Telstra to continue the delivery of critical network and telecommunications services in support of Defence operations.

The contract, valued at over $1 billion, will extend and refresh the Terrestrial Communications Services Contract with Telstra for five years. These services support the capabilities delivered under Joint Project 2047, a multi-phased project designed to improve Defence networked communications infrastructure, which has recently reached Final Operating Capability.

In a statement, the Department said: "These enhancements to Defence’s communications systems have comprehensively transformed Defence network infrastructure and mobility communication platforms, delivering enhanced network performance and resilience as well as voice, video and other collaborative tools and services.

"The capability delivered through Joint Project 2047 and the partnership with Telstra has been instrumental in supporting various Defence Operations, including Operation Bushfire Assist and COVID-19.

"The services provided through this new contract allow Defence greater agility to meet increasing demand on telecommunications services, ensure capabilities are kept modern, drawing on the latest technology and securing the Department from the pervasive cyber threat.

"The contract also represents significant opportunities for Australian industry, in particular, Australian Small and Medium Enterprises and indigenous companies.

"Defence’s partnership with Telstra will drive the next evolution of Defence telecommunications capability and services, which is critical to supporting Defence’s mission in defending Australia and its national interests."

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