November 6, 2017 | Israeli defense technology company, Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd., announced late Sunday that it has opened a branch in Melbourn, Australia ahead of a “significant arming program” for the Australian military. Rafael, which co-developed Israel’s famous Iron Dome anti-missile defense system, said the Melbourne office will be run jointly by Israeli and Australian teams. Rafael’s executive VP marketing, Giora Katz, said that there was “potential for deals amounting to several hundred million dollars. Opening the company in Australia is part of Rafael’s global strategy for creating local partnerships with various countries in order to meet the growing demand from many countries for having some of the work performed by local companies.” According to a report in the business daily Calcalist, the Australian military already uses a number of Rafael technologies including remote controlled weapon systems, naval defense technologies and aerial strike guidance systems, Rafael said. The Israeli company has over 100 collaborations worldwide, including a missile factory in India. Defense companies such as Rafael, Elbit Systems Ltd., and Israel Aerospace Industries Ltd. will soon be able to more freely market their technologies after the Israeli Ministry of Defense last month approved a plan to loosen restrictions on defense exporters.