The Australian Capital Territory continues to play an important part in the defence of our nation.

Minister for Defence, Senator the Hon Marise Payne, and Liberal Senator for the Australian Capital Territory, Senator the Hon Zed Seselja, welcomed the significant investment that Defence will make in the ACT during 2018-19.

The existing Health Centre at the Royal Military College at Duntroon will be replaced and a new $20 million Health Centre will be built in 2018-19. This centre will support ADF members at the Royal Military College, the Australian Defence Force Academy and the broader Canberra region, providing primary care (including mental health and rehabilitation), an inpatient unit, pharmacy, physiotherapy, dental, and general support.

In 2018-19, work will also continue on the Russell Buildings Infrastructure Upgrade.  This $75.4 million project will provide essential building and engineering service upgrades to extend the life of Russell Buildings R5 and R6.

Over the next four years from 2018-19, Defence Housing Australia is also planning to construct over 300 new properties in the ACT, providing further opportunities for small businesses and trades across the territory.

“The ACT is vitally important to the Australian Defence Force and is home to 17,300 Defence personnel. The Turnbull Government is continuing to invest heavily in capability, personnel and facilities in the Territory as a key outcome of our 2016 Defence White Paper and $200 billion investment in Defence capability,” Minister Payne said.

“In 2017-18 Defence is on track to spend over $4.6 billion directly in the ACT, including estate services, salaries, capital works and other expenditure.

“The new health care facilities at Duntroon will ensure ADF members in the region have the best possible health care.”

“Further, our Local Industry Capability Plan program will ensure that local businesses and trades in the ACT will have the best opportunity possible to secure work on future Defence facilities projects in the Territory and the region.”

Minister Seselja said that the ACT had a long history of supporting the Australian Defence Force and that the 2018-19 Budget demonstrated the Government’s confidence in the Territory.

“The Territory is home to thousands of Defence personnel and their families, who bring hundreds of millions of dollars into the economy and play an important part in the ACT Community,” Minister Seselja said.

“The Coalition Government’s continued investment in new Defence facilities in the ACT provides essential national security capability, supports our local ADF members and provides opportunities for local Territory businesses to secure more work and create more jobs.”