1st June 2009. Over the next four years Defence funding will amount to approximately $104 billion. This is a massive investment of public money. Australians have a right to expect that Defence will use this money carefully. Defence must operate as efficiently as possible to extract the maximum value from this funding.
We have called this plan for a stronger Defence Force ‘Force 2030’ because it will take years of investment and steady building to create the military capabilities we need for national security in the future. Substantial funding is also needed to fix key areas in Defence where under-investment in past years has left vulnerabilities in our military capabilities and reduced the critical support functions to the ADF.
The Defence organisation needs fundamental reform if it is to be well placed to own and operate Force 2030. Reform will comprehensively and fundamentally improve the management of Defence, making the organisation more efficient and effective, and creating significant savings to reinvest in building a stronger Defence Force. Reform on this scale is never easy, but the benefit is that these changes will give Australia a stronger, more agile and harder-hitting Defence Force.
Over the ten years to 2019 the Strategic Reform Program will deliver gross savings of around $20 billion. This money will be reinvested to deliver stronger military capabilities, to remediate areas where there has not been enough funding in the past and to modernise the Defence enterprise ‘backbone’, all of which are essential to
support the fighting force.
The pages that follow outline the Strategic Reform Program. After support to current military operations there is no higher priority for Defence than to deliver these reforms. This document sets out a blueprint for reform but it does not propose to offer all the answers right now for what will be a challenging decade for Defence. The target of $20 billion is fixed but the reforms must be flexible enough to capture opportunities for making the right changes when they arise.