Telstra has been selected as the Preferred Tenderer for the provision of Terrestrial Communications Services to Defence, following a value for money evaluation.
Defence will now enter into further negotiations with Telstra to finalise the contract for provision of Terrestrial Communications Services
Initial operating capability is planned for 2013, with the final operating capability planned to be achieved in 2015.
Joint Project 2047 Phase 3 will enable Defence users to connect to Defence networks at any time, including through wireless technologies using both Defence and personal devices. It will also allow Defence users to have desktop to desktop video conferencing for collaboration on the Defence Restricted Network and the Defence Secret Network. This will provide Defence users with greater flexibility and reduce travel costs.
Deployed users will have better communications capability from the deployed environment to the fixed Defence network.
As Defence is still in an ongoing procurement process, no cost or value of the Contract can be disclosed, however, some cost and value information on Joint Project 2047 Phase 3, Terrestrial Communications is available from the publicly available Defence Capability Plan 2012.
In February 2011, the Government gave First Pass approval to Joint Project 2047 Phase 3, Terrestrial Communications, a major project to enhance the Department of Defence’s fixed telecommunications networks.
Joint Project 2047 Phase 3, is a central component of the Defence Information and Communications Technology Strategy 2009, and will be delivered as part of the Defence Strategic Reform Program. The Defence Terrestrial Communications Network includes networks at over 330 sites in Australia, the wide area network and interfaces to tactical networks and partners. It also supports some 100,000 users.
Since then, Defence has explored options with industry on how best to meet its future terrestrial communications needs. A Request for Tender for the provision of Terrestrial Communications Services (CIOG 106/10) was released in July 2011 to three short listed respondents (Telstra, Optus and Fujitsu).
The initial evaluation phase of the Terrestrial Communications Services Request for Tender was completed in January 2012. From March – May 2012, Defence engaged in parallel negotiations with two shortlisted tenderers —Telstra and Optus.
The Terrestrial Communications Services procurement activity is not complete and Defence will now enter into further negotiations with Telstra to finalise the contract for provision of Terrestrial Communications Services. Finalisation of this process is also subject to Government Second Pass approval (anticipated for December 2012). No contract has been awarded at this stage in the process.