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NEWS | June 27, 2024

8th TSC and ADF Joint Logistics Command sign milestone agreement

By Maj. Jonathon Daniell, 8th Theater Sustainment Command

The 8th Theater Sustainment Command and the Australian Defence Force Joint Logistics Command signed a milestone agreement in Canberra, Australia May 21, 2024.

Maj. Gen. Jered Helwig, the 8th TSC Commanding General and Commodore Shane Glassock, the Director General of the Logistics Operations Branch, Joint Logistics Command, signed the logistics letter of intent that prescribes the care for U.S. Army equipment stored in Bandiana, Australia.

“This agreement highlights the relationship we have with one of our longest standing partners in the Pacific,” said Helwig. “By forward staging equipment we need for Operation Pathways, we are carrying out the plan that was agreed upon during AUSMIN 23.”

The impetus for the logistics letter of intent stems from the Australia – U.S. Ministerial Consultations from 2022 and 2023. The 2022 joint agreement aims to deliver an integrated logistics network, while the 2023 AUSMIN approved the Army positioning of three company-sized elements worth of equipment in Bandiana.

Helwig and Glassock have a longstanding relationship and previously worked together during Talisman Sabre 23, which occurred during last year’s AUSMIN. The duo stood up the first Combined Joint Theater Sustainment Component in Brisbane to coordinate and oversee logistics activities and events for TS23.

“The agreement solidifies the ongoing and important relationship between the 8th Theater Sustainment Command and Joint Logistics Command,” said Glassock. “It further demonstrates the utility of the Joint Logistics network across Australia, together with our critical relationship with Australian industry in providing logistics services.”

Chief Warrant Officer 5 Candido Crespo, the command senior warrant officer advisor for the 8th TSC drafted the LLOI with inputs from both organizations to codify the ongoing work being done in Bandiana. The agreement elaborates on the scope of responsibilities for each organization and assigns duties to ensure proper maintenance and care for the equipment.

“Ultimately, not much is changing in the way we are already doing business,” said Crespo. “Which underscores the relationship we have with the ADF. Rather what this agreement really does is ensure we look at the details and provide the foundation to scale our maintenance plan as necessary.”

As 8th TSC prepares for Talisman Sabre 25 alongside the Joint Logistics Command, one of the benefits of forward positioning equipment in Australia is significantly reducing the overall Logistics and associated efforts required to comply with Australian biosecurity and national entry requirements.

The Australian Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry manages the arrival of all goods into the country to ensure all items are clear of debris, invasive insects and other species.

In preparation for TS23, U.S. Army Pacific committed significant Soldier work hours to prepare each piece of equipment to meet the DAFF standard. With three companies’ worth of equipment already in Australia, this is a major hurdle already cleared for TS25.

AUSMIN is the principal forum for bilateral consultations between the United States and Australia. The annual meeting brings the Australian Ministers for Foreign Affairs and Defense with the U.S. Secretaries of State and Defense, along with senior officials from both portfolios, according to the Australia official website.

The ADF Joint Logistics Command leads the coordinated delivery of effective and efficient logistics to enable Defence to train, fight, and win by leading the ADF logistics information systems, the logistics network of warehouses, maintenance, distribution facilities, and is the Head of the Defence fuel supply chain.

The 8th TSC coordinates and integrates operational-level sustainment and supports rehearsals of brigade-level engineering, protection, and finance operations in support of joint operations within the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command area of responsibility.