Australia’s air combat capability will be bolstered under a $454m Morrison government investment.

Seven uncrewed autonomous aerial vehicles, made in Australia, will come into service by 2025.

The first Australian-built aircraft in more than 50 years were officially named in a ceremony held at RAAF Base Amberley in March.

The MQ-28A Ghost Bats are the result of a joint partnership between the Royal Australian Air Force and Boeing Defence Australia over the past four years.

Defence Minister Peter Dutton said the rapid development of uncrewed air combat capability could offer potential benefits for allies and partners around the world.

“This investment in world-leading technology further advances Australia’s first-mover status in a highly competitive industry and establishes the Loyal Wingman Program as a serious competitor in key export markets,” Mr Dutton said.

“By sharing technology and leveraging the expertise of our US partners, the MQ-28A aircraft will be interoperable with our allies and partners in the Indo-Pacific region ensuring that our combined air combat forces are enhanced and stand ready to defend Australia and its national interests.”

“Over 70 per cent of each aircraft is sourced, designed and manufactured in Australia, by Australians,” Minister Dutton said.

“This investment will more than double the Australian workforce directly associated with the program, generating a significant number of advanced engineering and high-tech jobs in the aviation and Defence advanced technologies sectors, particularly in Brisbane.