The Australian government and Lockheed Martin have signed a deal related to the delivery and sustainment of the F-35A.

The $91 million package consolidates existing arrangements provided through the F-35’s Joint Program Office into a single contract with Lockheed Martin Australia, says minister for defence industry Melissa Price.

Price adds that the F-35 programme involves 50 Australian companies, generating A$1.3 billion ($891 miillion) annually with F-35 deliveries. This is expected to grow to $2 billion by 2023.

Australia F-35 flies - Lockheed Martin

Commonwealth of Australia

“[The new support agreement] is a significant milestone towards achieving initial operating capacity for the F-35A,” says defence minister Linda Reynolds.

Cirium's Fleets Analyzer shows that the Royal Australian Air Force has 14 in-service F-35As, with deliveries of the type continuing. Canberra is committed to 72 examples of the type, and possibly up to 100.