NIOA is the major supplier of guns and bullets to Australian police
NIOA manufactures bullets at their munitions factory in Benalla, Victoria, while their HQ is a large weapons facility at Brisbane Airport. The company recently opened a Melbourne office opposite Victoria Barracks in Coventry St, South Melbourne. NIOA is in partnership with global weapons giants Rheinmetall (Germany) and Herstal Group (Belgium). Now they have started making bombs and missiles as well.
NIOA represents in excess of 50 international suppliers including household names like, Federal and CCI ammunition, Ruger, Anschutz, Leupold, Bushnell, Colt, Glock and many more. Nonetheless, NIOA promotes itself as a model Queensland citizen. The company was awarded Prime Contractor of the Year and Land Business of the Year in Defence Connects – Australian Defence Industry Awards. NIOA is the major sponsor of this years Landforces Weapons Expo in Brisbane Qld.
NIOA AND THE MILITARISATION OF THE POLICE: #StopArmingKillers
Starting in 2017 the company branched out from the commercial gun market into military and law enforcement, supplying Australian and New Zealand police with 70,000 Glock pistols and providing the military with their latest infantry weapon – an automatic grenade launcher.
The Glock pistols are maintained through the Brisbane facility and the company also supplies 70 per cent of ammunition to Australian police. According to their website, by 2022 “Over one billion rounds have been supplied by NIOA to the Australian Law Enforcement, Military and Sporting markets”.
NIOA formed a partnership with Winchester (owned by Belgian conglomerate Herstal Group) in 2021. Together the two companies dominate the law enforcement market. In 2021 the two companies successfully tendered for the bulk of the armaments supply to the NT police, worth a total of $1.8 million.
The year of writing (2022) marks 15 years since the beginning of the NT Intervention. There have been 500 deaths in custody since the Royal Commission into Deaths in Custody report was handed down in 1991. First Nations families across Australia and communities in the NT have repeatedly called for the implementation of the Royal Commission’s recommendations, an end to the imprisonment of children and the repeal of the repressive measures of the Intervention. This colony was founded on racist violence, with police and military guns. To this day, institutional racist violence is killing First Nations people. Wage Peace is calling on NIOA to end its business with Australian (or any) police. Make something better than bullets. Stop arming the Intervention.
Current contract for 5 years of ammunition
Contract for guns (one of many)
WHO IS NIOA?
NIOA is part of the rapidly developing weapons industry in Brisbane and they have benefited financially from being part of the Global Supply Chain Program.
This Queensland company has evolved from a small regional ammunition retailer to Australia’s largest privately owned firearms and munitions supplier. New partnerships with companies like Rheinmetall and US Winchester have been encouraged and financially supported by state and federal governments, bringing NIOA into the global supply chain. NIOA also exercises political influence through the board of SIFA (Shooting Industry Foundation of Australia), and through familial ties. NIOA CEO Robert Nioa is also the son-in-law of federal member for Kennedy Bob Katter. NIOA has donated at least $160,000 to Katter’s Australian Party (KAP), and $20,000 to the Liberal Democrats.
NIOA does not file accounts with the corporate regulator but a sign of its growth comes from the Austender website, which shows various NIOA companies have sold firearms and ammunition, war weapons, vehicles and other military equipment worth $1.2 billion to the Commonwealth government since 2012 . Partner company to NIOA, Rheinmetall, won a massive defence contract in 2018 worth $5.2 billion after meeting Barnaby Joyce at NIOA’s headquarters.
The government defence export strategy and the increasing militarisation of police forces is advantageous for NIOA. The company has had a productive association with Christopher Pyne, who in January 2018, while Minister for Defence, announced the award of a $100 million Federal government contract by the Commonwealth under the LAND 17-1C.2 Future Artillery Ammunition program. In 2020 Pyne was welcomed as the chairman of the company’s inaugural advisory board. The revolving door between the Defence Ministry and weapons corporations has seen Kim Beasely, Brendan Nelson and Christopher Pyne all take up lucrative leadership positions with the very weapons companies they awarded contracts to while in parliament.
NIOA BLOCKADED IN BRISBANE
Activists blockaded the gates of weapons manufacturer NIOA in Meanjin on Jagera and Turribal land on 17th of June in solidarity with the POLICE CEASEFIRE call by Yuendumu elders. NIOA is a Brisbane-based weapons manufacturer and the majority supplier of guns and bullets to Australian police.
Activists spoke to the connection between continuing state violence, the militarisation of police forces and the development of the Australian weapons industry. Speakers drew the connection between extreme frontier violence by militarised police in the previous two centuries of colonisation and the current presence of militarised police across remote communities. They listened to the plea from the heart of Australia from the elders of Yuendumu: “Enough violence! No more guns in remote communities.”
Nioa is the major sponsor of the upcoming Land Forces weapons exhibition, on in Brisbane in October.
Nioa have used the police weapons contracts to develop their business, becoming a major player in the weapons industry, including the emerging missile program. Since 2012 NIOA has supplied Australian and New Zealand police with 70,000 Glock pistols, which are maintained through the Brisbane facility.
NIOA BULLET FACTORY at BENALLA, VICTORIA, BLOCKADED
Today the NIOA munitions factory in Benalla, (Victoria) has been blockaded by activists from Wage Peace, in solidarity with the call by Yuendumu elder Jampijinpa, Ned Hargraves, for a police ceasefire. Benalla is in Yorta Yorta territory. NIOA bullets are manufactured at the Australian government munitions plant in Benalla, two hours north of Melbourne.
Activists spoke about the violence of colonisation, which has continued to today in the institutional racist violence that is killing First Nations people. Wage Peace is calling on NIOA to end its business with Australian (or any) police. Make something better than bullets. “Stop arming the Intervention.”
Wage Peace’s actions today are in solidarity with the powerful Karrinjarla Muwajarri initiative by elders in Yuendumu, a Walpiri community north of Alice Springs. Walpiri elders are calling for a police ceasefire – no more guns on their lands – along with a raft of judicial and social measures to increase their safety and respect self-determination.“
We demand our self-determination, our rightful decision-making authority, and our resources to be restored to us… What we are calling for is Karrinjarla Muwajarri, a police ceasefire.”
NIOA is a Brisbane-based weapons manufacturer and the majority supplier of guns and bullets to Australian police. Since 2012 NIOA has supplied Australian and New Zealand police with 70,000 Glock pistols, NIOA also supplies 70 per cent of ammunition to Australian police.