Polling | 26 April 2016

2016 Lowy Institute polling: Majority of Australians favour a local build for next-generation submarines

Australians have strong views on where Australia’s next submarines should be built, with the latest Lowy Institute polling finding that 70% of Australian adults want the submarines ‘built mainly in Australia, even if this will cost us more’.

Only 26% say ‘the submarines should be built at the best possible price, even if this means they are mainly built overseas’.

The site of the submarine construction project has been a topic of considerable public and political debate, with pressure to involve Australian shipbuilders and labour to stimulate the domestic economy and provide jobs.    

  • Alex Oliver

Australians have strong views on where Australia’s next submarines should be built, with the latest Lowy Institute polling finding that 70% of Australian adults want the submarines ‘built mainly in Australia, even if this will cost us more’.

Only 26% say ‘the submarines should be built at the best possible price, even if this means they are mainly built overseas’.

The site of the submarine construction project has been a topic of considerable public and political debate, with pressure to involve Australian shipbuilders and labour to stimulate the domestic economy and provide jobs.    

  • Alex Oliver
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Executive Summary

This result is drawn from the forthcoming 2016 Lowy Institute Poll, which will be released in full in June 2016. The Lowy Institute Poll is based on a nationally representative telephone survey of 1202 Australian adults conducted by market research company Fieldworks between 26 February and 15 March 2016. The Poll’s error margin is approximately +/- 2.8%.

The question put to survey respondents was:

‘And now about Australia’s proposed purchase of new submarines. Companies in France, Germany and Japan are in a competitive tender to build Australia’s next generation of submarines. Which statement comes closest to your personal view: the submarines should be built mainly  in Australia, even if this will cost us more … [or] … the submarines should be built at the best possible price, even if this means they are mainly built overseas?’

Table of results:

 

The submarines should be built mainly in Australia, even if this will cost us more

70%

The submarines should be built at the best possible price, even if this means they are mainly built overseas

26%

Neither/Don’t know/no view

4%