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Whenuapai: Incorrect Dates For Air Force Move

Air Force Base Whenuapai: Incorrect Dates For Air Force Move

Recent media coverage has advised that the Air Force will vacate Whenuapai in 2007 as part of the process to consolidate operational capability at Ohakea. The timeframe indicated in the reports is incorrect.

Latest estimates indicate that the consolidation project will take more than five years from the time the Government approves the project. Government approval has not yet been given.

Work is currently underway examining the options, opportunities and alternatives, the milestones, funding requirements and risk mitigation for consolidation at Ohakea. The NZDF will provide recommendations to the Minister of Defence for Cabinet consideration later this year.

Consolidation of the Air Force's operational capability at Ohakea is a substantial project which involves relocation of Air Force personnel and their families, and a significant amount of new construction and facilities reconfiguration. The base at Whenuapai will need to remain operating until such time as the necessary facilities are developed, transfers of personnel and equipment are completed, and Air Force capabilities properly established at Ohakea. This is unlikely to be before 2010.

Further information is available on the Air Force website at http://www.airforce.mil.nz/latestinfo/projects/takatini.pdf

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