World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 

Australian Government welcomes report into Army

Aus Government welcomes report into Army

MEDIA RELEASE

THE HON. JOHN MOORE, MP Minister for Defence

Monday, 4 September 2000 MIN243/00

Government Welcomes Report into Army

The Minister for Defence, John Moore, today welcomed the report of the Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade, From Phantom to Force: Towards a More Efficient and Effective Army.

"The Government currently is conducting a wide-ranging review of Australia's Defence policies - including public consultation - regarding the future of our Defence Force. The Committee's report is a welcome addition to that debate and consultation process," Mr Moore said.

"The Government's response to the report's recommendations will be considered in the context of the forthcoming Defence White Paper.

"Modernising the Australian Army has been a major priority since I became Minister. In the past two years, the Government has put in place policy initiatives which have revitalised the Army - increased their readiness, their ability to deploy and their combat capabilities," said Mr Moore.

The initiatives include:

* raising a second brigade to a higher readiness notice of 28 days, to increase the range of response options available to Government. The 1st Brigade, based in Darwin, was used as the basis for this increased preparedness, giving the Government the flexibility to mount the INTERFET deployment to East Timor;

* increasing the number of fully operational infantry battalions from four to six, by bringing to combat readiness an additional two, full-time Army battalion groups, raising Army's combat strength by 3,000 to 26,000 full-time personnel;

* enhancing the role of the Army Reserves by amending legislation to enable the call out of Reserves in peacetime, and providing appropriate, associated protection and incentives to both Reservists and employers;

* expanding amphibious mobility and deployability through bringing the catamaran HMAS Jervis Bay into service and fixing the LPA Amphibious Transport ships.

"Without these initiatives, Australia would have had considerable difficulty mounting and sustaining the INTERFET and UNTAET deployments to East Timor, particularly while maintaining our other commitments," Mr Moore said.

"These initiatives are in sharp contrast to the record of the previous Federal Government, which allowed Army's combat capability to run down. Two full-time infantry battalions were downgraded to Ready Reserve battalions which, remarkably, cost almost as much, yet couldn't be deployed if required."

The Minister said that the role and structure of the Australian Army would be would be further defined in the Defence White Paper, due for release before the end of the year.

As recently as last month, the Federal Government announced that the Army would acquire up to 150 additional Australian Light Armoured Vehicles (ASLAV) and 51 ground surveillance radar systems, which will enhance Army's capabilities to conduct significant operations.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Gordon Campbell: On The Hong Kong Protest Movement

The pro-democracy protests enjoy huge support among Hong Kong’s youth, partly because the democratic systems currently at risk have only a limited time span. More>>

ALSO:

Pacific Island Forum: Australia v Everyone Else On Climate Action

Traditionally, communiques capture the consensus reached at the meeting. In this case, the division on display between Australia and the Pacific meant the only commitment is to commission yet another report into what action needs to be taken. More>>

ALSO:

For NZ, It Was May 6: Earth Overshoot Day 2019 Is The Earliest Ever

Humanity is currently using nature 1.75 times faster than our planet’s ecosystems can regenerate. This is akin to using 1.75 Earths... More>>

ALSO:

Asylum: More Manus Refugees Fly To US But Hundreds Still In Limbo

“The US deal was never going to provide enough places for the refugees Australia has held on Manus and Nauru. There are over 1800 refugees needing resettlement,” said Ian Rintoul, spokesperson for the Refugee Action Coalition. More>>

ALSO: