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Government confident in Airservices’ OneSKY-CMATS project

written by Robert Dougherty | July 9, 2024

The Australian Advanced Air Traffic System (TAAATS) currently used by Airservices is set to be replaced by OneSKY-CMATS. (Image: Airservices)

Critical features of the Civil Military Air Traffic Management System (OneSKY-CMATS) have been discussed during a recent Projects of Concern Summit held in Canberra.

OneSKY-CMATS, a partnership between the government-owned Airservices Australia and the Department of Defence, is seeking to replace existing air traffic management systems with an advanced integrated system known as the Civil Military Air Traffic Management System.

The ambitious system, designed to unite civil and military air traffic control across Australia, was originally conceived after a 2009 national aviation white paper but was later added as a ‘project of concern’ in 2017.

A doubling of the project cost and expected more than ten-year delay from 2015 to 2026, was outlined by the Australian National Audit Office in a 2019 review of the project.

The most recent Projects of Concern Summit discussed the integrated master schedule, completion of a test readiness review and commencement of software testing.

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Minister for Defence Industry Pat Conroy said all parties have agreed to continue executing the agreed remediation plan through a set of regular milestones.

“Since coming to office the Albanese Government has significantly increased the frequency of Projects of Concern Summits, underscoring our commitment to ensuring critical and complex projects get back on track,” he said.

“The ministerial engagement through these summits has brought the Government, industry and Defence representatives together to inject more leadership and oversight into project delivery.

“Over the past 12 months, considerable effort has been undertaken by the OneSKY-CMATS project team to develop a robust plan to remediate areas of concern. The Government remains confident this project will deliver a viable capability to Defence.”

OneSKY-CMATS is the sixth Projects of Concern Summit held under the current Federal Government, demonstrating commitment to regular ministerial summits to remediate challenging projects, according to Mr Conroy.

Late last year, a Projects of Concern summit was held regarding the OneSKY-CMATS project. At that meeting it was agreed to finalise a contract change proposal and an integrated master schedule.

That summit was attended by the Minister for Defence Industry Pat Conroy, the Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government Catherine King MP, defence industry representatives, and officials from Airservices Australia and the Department of Defence.

“I thank officials from Airservices and Defence and all other representatives for their work… in discussing the Civil Military Air Traffic Management System project. Top-level focus is essential to ensure we can remediate areas of deficiency,” Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government Catherine King, said at that time.

“There have been considerable efforts over the past 12 months to develop a robust remediation plan to get this project back on track.

“The Government is confident this project will deliver a key capability system to Defence.”

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