We should have a policy on defence spending, i see there was a defence policy working group, but cant see any other references to a defence policy.
Joe Hockey used to say the previous government didnt have a revenue problem, they had a spending problem. The LNP have cut taxes (carbon and mining) and are increasing spending on defence (at least). They are trying to bring in a GST so they can cut expenditure on health and eduction, and justify income tax cuts.
Recent government military spending includes
- $89b on Subs and frigates
- 58 extra joint strike fighters at $12b, which doesnt include the cost for the initial 24 i dont think.
- Billions on some fancy helicopters as well i think, but cant find link
We are 11th in military spending per capita or 13th or 14th by total military spending, we spend 1.9% GDP on defence and it is expected to increase to 2% (NZ spends 1.1%).
If we had an expenditure closer to NZ we would save $13B or so a year.
If we had an expenditure of 1.74% as we had in 2000 (after increases for the olympics), we would save $2.5B a year.
Geographically we should be under less pressure militarily than most other OECD nation, our threats are more a result of our the actions or our allies. It should be something we have some control of.
Expenditure has been cut from "soft power", like foreign aid, and the Australia Network (tv), that promote understanding and prevent conflict.
Not sure where the party stands on this.