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Sunday, May 5, 2013

Australia Defence White Paper: Key Points



Collins class submarines (photo : naval technology)

THE key elements of the Gillard government's defence white paper, released today.

Main technology decisions:

Australia remains committed to buying the advanced Lockheed Martin F-35 Joint Strike Fighters.

Australia to buy an additional 12 Boeing Super Hornets, configured in the electronic warfare Growler version, giving the RAAF a total of 36.

Government committed to buying 12 new submarines, based on an evolved version of the Collins class. Rules out buying an existing model from a European manufacturer.

Navy supply ships HMAS Sirius and HMAS Success will be replaced.

Government to ramp up plans to replace the navy's Armidale-class patrol boats.

No plans for a fourth air warfare destroyer.

Overall thrust of the White paper:


More conciliatory to China than the 2009 White Paper.

Welcomes China's rise and the modernisation of its military as a legitimate outcome of its growth.

Unlike the 2009 White Paper, new document makes no commitment to a particular level of defence funding.

Government committed to fiscal discipline and wants a defence budget that meets operational requirements.

(The Australian)

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