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Budget 2004: Extera money to sustain ADF as world class force.



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Media contacts Catherine Fitzpatrick (Senator Hill) 02 6277 7800 0405 351 245

Defence Media Liaison 02 6265 3343 0408 498 664

www.defence.gov.au

BUDGET 2004-05 SENATOR THE HON ROBERT HILL Minister for Defence Leader of the Government in the Senate

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Tuesday, 11 May 2004 86/2004

EXTRA MONEY TO SUSTAIN ADF AS WORLD CLASS FORCE

The largely unsung part of Defence - logistics support - is to be boosted by a funding injection of $815.6 million over four years.

“You can have the best people in the world but you have to maintain their equipment and ensure that reliable weapons and platforms are available when and where they are needed,” Defence Minister Robert Hill said.

“This is the behind the scenes stuff, it’s not glamorous but it makes or breaks a defence force.

“The extra funding in the 2004-05 Budget will ensure the men and women of the Australian Defence Force continue to get the best support. The new money will be used to maintain a full range of capability options, ensuring that the ADF remains well equipped and well prepared to deal with any contingencies that might arise now and in the future.”

Senator Hill said the latest commitment brought the Government’s total new funding for this crucial aspect of support for the ADF to $1,960.7 million over the last two budgets.

“Recognising the ADF’s heightened level of activity in recent years, we will increase support for a range of key platforms and capabilities to maintain the high level of readiness necessary to respond to the challenges of Australia’s strategic environment,” Senator Hill said.

The money will be used for enhanced maintenance, refits and/or upgrades for a range of capabilities including: Afloat Support (HMAS Success); Maritime Patrol Aircraft (P-3C Orions); ANZAC Frigates (FFH); Training Aircraft (PC-9s); Naval Aviation (including Sea King, Seahawk and Super Seasprite helicopters and Kalkara pilotless target aircraft); Army Aviation (Black Hawk helicopters); Army Surveillance capability (Project NINOX); Army Battlefield Combat Support System (BCSS); and Transport Aircraft (C130H Hercules).

The new funding also provides for the continuation through 2007-08 of the increased logistics support announced in last year’s budget for the Collins submarines, F/A-18 Hornets, C-130J Hercules aircraft and explosive ordnance.

Together with other new Budget measures, the logistics funding is a key component of the Government’s commitment to providing the resources, equipment and services to raise, train and sustain our forces at the high standards required for operations in Australia’s changed strategic environment.