Defence is an important contributor to the NT economy with the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) estimating that Defence expenditure in the Territory was $1.34 billion, equivalent to 7.9% of the Territory’s Gross State Product (GSP) in 2009-10.
The Northern Territory, and in particular Darwin, has a strategic importance where the defence of the nation and its interests are concerned. The Army, Air Force and Navy all maintain a significant presence in the Northern Territory, providing a broad range of opportunities for industry support.
For the past 10 years Darwin has been an important mounting base, particularly for the Army, in deployments to Iraq, Timor Leste and Afghanistan as well as in the Asian Tsunami relief efforts.
New Defence platforms and technologies are based in the Top End including:
- 17 of Australia’s 22 Tiger Armed Reconnaissance Helicopters
- 10 of Australia’s 14 Armidale Class Patrol Boats
- 41 of Australia’s 59 Abrams main Battle Tanks.
The combined Australian Defence Force presence in the Northern Territory, including families, represents approximately 6.5% of the Northern Territory population.
Royal Australian Air Force Base Tindal, in the Katherine region, is one of Australia’s most important Defence installations. The base is very much part of the nearby town of Katherine with base personnel and their families making up almost 25% of the Katherine population.
The Northern Territory is also home to large defence force training areas. These include Bradshaw Field Training Area which covers an area of more than 8 000 square kilometres, Mt Bundy Training Area, Delamere Air Weapons Range and the North Australia Exercise Area. These facilities regularly host joint exercises and training by Australian and foreign forces.
The Northern Territory has an estimated 15 034 Defence personnel and dependants (as at June 2010) based in Darwin, which equates to 11% of Australia’s total permanent ADF personnel.
Defence Support Hub
The Northern Territory Government has released 53 hectares of land near Robertson Barracks (near the city of Palmerston) for the development of an Industry Park incorporating a Defence Support Hub. The hub will facilitate industry development and the co-location of key industry services. It will also enable prime contractors and small businesses to establish strategic clusters to deliver valuable support for Defence platforms based in the north.
Key Industry Contacts
Australian Industry and Defence Network NT (AIDN NT)
AIDN NT is the Northern Territory branch of a national organisation that promotes Defence support industry capability and links businesses to opportunities.
Northern Territory Industry Capability Network (NTICN)
NTICN promotes local businesses and industry capability and helps connect buyers to competitive local suppliers. NTICN is linked to the national ICN database.
The Northern Territory Government’s Ministry of Defence Support and dedicated Defence Support Division assists industry to grow its capacity and capability to meet the ongoing needs of Defence.
The Northern Territory Government is committed to the maintenance of major Defence platforms in close proximity to where the equipment is based, ensuring that Defence can maintain its readiness for deployment in the most effective and economic manner.
Defence Support Division
|Tel: +61 8 8999 7520
Fax: +61 8 8999 5106
|GPO Box 3200
Darwin NT 0801
76 The Esplanade, Darwin
Content current at 27 May 2011.