South Australian defence shipbuilding company ASC has axed 101 blue collar jobs from its facility at Osborne near Port Adelaide.
The submarine and shipbuilder ASC has let go 101 contractors from its facility in Adelaide in a move it says will increase productivity on its air warfare destroyer program.
"This contractor management activity is normal practice for projects of this nature and has, and will, occur several times over the life of the project," it said in a statement.
“On the basis of continuous improvement, ASC is making enhancements to the way it undertakes production activities, including changing the sequencing of work. Whilst the change in sequencing will lead to efficiency gains during the entire construction timeline for each chip, it means at this stage of the build, the nature of the work to be performed is incompatible with the level of production contractors on site. Accordingly 101 labour hire contractors have been advised today that their positions on the AWD program are no longer required," said the statement.
Australian Manufacturing Workers' Union SA assistant secretary Colin Fenney said the 101 contractors included fabricators, boilermakers and pipefitters who were employed on the Air Warfare Destroyer Project.
The workers were told of their fate on Friday morning.
South Australia's Defence Industries Minister, Martin Hamilton-Smith, said the job losses highlighted the perilous future of naval shipbuilding in Australia, where $250 billion in work was at stake.
"This news is extremely disappointing for the workers and their families," he said in a statement.
Another 120 contractors lost their jobs in May. Independent South Australian Senator Nick Xenophon says even more submarine manufacturing jobs remain at risk.