Building a base for the P-8A Poseidon Fleet

  • Hon Ron Mark

Tenders have now opened for the for a three year construction and equipment fit out phase that will deliver the new P-8A Poseidon fleet a home at RNZAF Base Ohakea, says Minister of Defence Ron Mark.

“The Government’s investment in this key part of the Defence estate will ensure the Royal New Zealand Air Force can manage, maintain and task the new fleet of P-8A Poseidon aircraft efficiently, ahead of the first aircraft’s arrival in 2023,” says Mr Mark.

“A two-phase development is planned, with initial ground works scheduled to begin in November 2019. A request for proposals for this first stage of infrastructure work was released today on the Government Electronic Tender Service.

“Along with site preparation, work will include new roads on the base and installation of power, lighting and drainage, creating the aprons where aircraft park, and wash down areas that are essential for fleet maintenance.

“The second phase, focused on building construction, will be subject to a separate procurement process, with work expected to start in the second quarter of 2020. All infrastructure work is expected to be finished early 2022.

“This is an opportunity for New Zealand industry to be part of delivering this once in a generation project, and offers development opportunities at a regional level,” says Ron Mark.

The Request for Proposals closes on 12 September 2019.

In July 2018 the Government announced the decision to buy the fleet of four P-8A aircraft, along with two flight training simulators. The $2.34 billion project includes infrastructure with two hangars, an operations centre, warehousing, training and maintenance facilities planned.

The purchase by the Coalition Government of these aircraft to replace the aging P-3K2 fleet demonstrates a strong commitment to not only the security of New Zealand, but also our immediate region and further afield.