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A Stronger Defence Force

The Government has no higher responsibility than keeping Australia safe and secure. The Coalition has a responsible, long-term plan for Australia’s national security.

The Coalition is committed to building a more potent, agile and engaged Australian Defence Force (ADF), ready to respond whenever our interests are threatened or our help is needed.

To do this, we will increase Defence funding by $29.9 billion over the next ten years and deliver on our 2013 election commitment to return Defence spending to 2% of GDP within the decade.

We are investing in new capability, including:

  • A continuous naval shipbuilding program, commencing with nine Future Frigates and 12 Offshore Patrol Vessels;
  • Twelve new regionally-superior submarines to be built in Adelaide, creating around 2,800 jobs;
  • Enhanced intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, space, electronic warfare and cyber capabilities; and
  • Support for Australian Defence Force personnel – providing them with the advanced training, modern equipment and health care they deserve.
  • The Government is also undertaking comprehensive upgrades of Defence infrastructure across Australia to support our larger future force, including at key bases. This will also see the creation of local jobs.

A 21st Century Defence Industry

We are helping Australia develop a 21st century Defence industry, by investing $1.6 billion over 10 years in programs to build industry skills and drive competitiveness, while harnessing Australian innovation and expertise.

Our Defence industry plan will also help to create advanced manufacturing and hi-tech jobs, particularly in regional Australia.

Unlike Labor, our Defence plans have been independently costed to ensure they are achievable and affordable.

Labor’s record

Labor in government ripped $18 billion out of Defence and cut Defence spending, as a proportion of GDP, to the lowest level since 1938.

Labor’s decisions led to 119 defence projects being delayed, 43 projects being reduced and eight projects cancelled, risking critical capability gaps.

Labor also failed to place a single order at an Australian naval shipyard during its six years in office.

Under Labor the Australian Defence industry shed more than 10% of its workforce because of budget cuts and deferrals, procrastination and lack of opportunity for Australian suppliers.