Australia’s new government must make tough decisions in defence policy. Australia’s broad national interests and the challenging strategic environment in Indo-Pacific Asia make it essential to modernise the Australian Defence Force. The nation’s defence capabilities remain underfunded and its strategic edge in the region is eroding. The gap between the nation’s interests and capabilities is widening, and it is getting harder to meet the demands of the US alliance. Australia’s new government needs to restore focus and funding to defence.
- The Australian government will need a first-principles review to identify the military strategy and force structure required to protect and advance the nation’s interests.
- The Australian government must increase defence funding in order to modernise the Australian Defence Force's capabilities. Otherwise it will need to make drastic cuts to planned defence capability.
- The government must also think deeply about the role of the US alliance in Australia's security, and take the initiative in shaping that alliance in Australia’s interests.