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Budget boosts Defence Force capability

Hon Dr Wayne Mapp
Minister of Defence

28 May 2009

Budget boosts Defence Force capability

The Government has confirmed an extra $52 million in 2009/10 to improve operations and strengthen the capability of the New Zealand Defence Force.

The extra funding will deliver a Defence Force able to meet its operational challenges, Defence Minister Wayne Mapp says.

“By far the largest proportion of this investment goes towards the latest instalment of the Defence Funding Package, which is focused on modernising and enhancing military capability,” Dr Mapp says.

The $52 million is part of an extra $309 million the Government will spend on the Defence Force over the next four years.

The extra operating spending for 2009/10 will be used to introduce new equipment, restore infrastructure and support personnel initiatives. The main categories are:

• $15 million for restoring and improving infrastructure

• $10 million for increased aircraft activity and maintenance for aircraft returned to service after being upgraded

• $5 million for operation and maintenance of new Navy ships

• $2 million for improved soldier protection

• $1 million for improved intelligence capability

• $13 million for personnel initiatives to improve recruitment and retention

• $6 million for other initiatives

Funding in future years will continue to support these initiatives, as well as allow for the introduction into service and maintenance of the light and medium utility helicopters.

“A modern, well-equipped defence sector is vital for keeping New Zealand secure and for promoting peace and security in our region and further afield,” Dr Mapp says.

Budget 2009 also provides the Ministry of Defence with $1 million to develop a Defence White Paper in 2008/09 and 2009/10.

“The world has undergone significant changes over the past decade, so the Defence Review and White Paper is an opportunity to ensure our defence capabilities are the most appropriate for the challenges facing New Zealand today,” Dr Mapp says.

ENDS

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