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Defence Long Term Development Plan Update Released

Phil Goff

8 October, 2008
Defence Long Term Development Plan Update Released

Defence Minister Phil Goff today released the September 2008 update of the Defence Long Term Development Plan (LTDP).

"The fourth update indicates the major progress which has been made in rebuilding the New Zealand Defence Force, which by 1999 had suffered cuts in expenditure by National of more than 30 per cent," Phil Goff said.

"The LTDP was the Labour Government's response to the increasing obsolescence of Defence Force equipment across all three services by the end of the last decade.

"Expenditure of nearly $4 billion under the LTDP represents the largest single commitment of capital funding for Defence since the 1950's.

"It has provided financial certainty around plans to strengthen the Army, extend the role of the Navy and upgrade the Air Force. It has been a much welcomed and effective replacement for the former ad hoc defence procurement process," Phil Goff said.

"Equipment which our troops in 1999 would have considered state of the art, such as night vision goggles, electronic counter-measures, secure tactical communications and real time intelligence and surveillance capabilities are or shortly will be part of the normal operating inventory.

"Among the highlights this year will be the return of the first upgraded 757 modified for cargo as well as passengers, and the completion of the prototype upgrade C-130 Hercules and P3 Orions.

"Our first NH-90 medium utility helicopter will come off the production line in France within the next month or so, and we now have placed an order for new Agusta-Westland 109LUHs.These represent a generational change and state of the art equipment which will be among the most useful and heavily utilised additions to the Defence Force, playing a key role across all three Services.

"The Update Report outlines equipment received, approved and in acquisition phase and approved in principle.

"As was acknowledged at the RSA National Council yesterday, the New Zealand Defence Force will end the first decade of the 21st Century in much better shape than it ended the last decade of the 20th Century," Phil Goff said.


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