Regional jobs boost through Defence White Paper investment

Media Release


03 March 2016

Joint release with:

Michael McCormack

Assistant Minister for Defence
Federal Member for Riverina

Minister for Regional Development Fiona Nash and Assistant Minister for Defence Michael McCormack have welcomed major investments in regional Australia to be delivered under the 2016 Defence White Paper.

“The Coalition Government will increase Defence spending by $29.9 billion for a total investment of $195 billion over the next decade,” Senator Nash said.

“Much of this investment will be in rural and regional Australia, where most defence facilities are based.

“This $195 billion investment means more high paying, highly skilled jobs for rural and regional Australia. It's a huge vote of confidence in rural and regional Australia—and rural and regional Australia has the skills and professionalism to deliver.

“This means construction and development in rural and regional areas and jobs in building and construction, information technology and logistics.

“Regional businesses will also have the chance to capitalise on this investment by tendering for the supply of goods and services to Defence.”

Assistant Minister for Defence Michael McCormack said the investment through the White Paper in Defence industry capability, estate and infrastructure will create jobs and drive investment right across regional Australia.

“Up to $1 billion investment will benefit locations such as RAAF Williamtown in New South Wales, RAAF Tindal in the Northern Territory, Exmouth in Western Australia and the Jindalee Operational Radar Network facilities in northern Australia,” Mr McCormack said.

“A range of ADF operational bases will be upgraded. Lavarack Barracks (Townsville) and Robertson Barracks (Darwin) will receive around $50 million and $70 million respectively, and Larrakeyah Barracks (Darwin) and Campbell Barracks (Perth) will each receive around $200 million.

“Blamey Barracks, Kapooka (New South Wales) will receive around $400 million, and Irwin Barracks (Western Australia) approximately $100–200 million. In addition, Reserve and Cadet sites across the country will be redeveloped, with collective investment of around $1–2 billion over the decade.

“A number of ADF ranges and training areas, including Bradshaw Field Training Area (Northern Territory), Cultana Training Area (South Australia), Yampi Sound Training Area (Western Australia) and Puckapunyal Military Area (Victoria) will be upgraded, collectively receiving in the order of $1‑2 billion. Shoalwater Bay Training Area (Queensland) will also receive around $100–150 million in upgrades, as part of the Government's capability plans.

“RAAF Darwin will also be upgraded, and around $400–500 million will be spent on recruitment training facilities at HMAS Cerberus (Crib Point, Victoria), and around $400 million at RAAF Wagga.

“Naval operations facilities in northern Australia will receive up to $300 million and defence bases in Darwin and Cairns will be upgraded to support the strengthening of Australia's maritime capabilities, including wharves and port facility enhancements worth up to $1 billion.

“Regional Australia will be a major beneficiary of this investment which will translate into the creation of thousands of local jobs to assist in base redevelopment and upgrades as well as wider economic benefits for local communities.”

More information on the Defence White Paper is available at