The BGA Australia Team, led by Managing Director Michael “Mick” McNeill, wrote an update to clients on the recent release of the government’s Defense Strategic Review.


  • Australia’s Labor government has released and responded to the Defense Strategic Review, which will reform the country’s defense posture, strengthen its national security and prepare it for future challenges. The review is arguably the most important defense document since the 1980s.
  • The government will radically reshape Australia’s defense investment in response to the regional arms buildup and shorter strategic warning time. The 2023-24 budget, which will be released May 9, will likely project a significant increase in defense spending.


  • Six priority areas have been identified for immediate action: acquiring nuclear-powered submarines through the Australia-United Kingdom-United States (AUKUS) trilateral security pact to improve deterrence capabilities; developing the ADF’s ability to accurately strike targets at longer ranges and manufacture munitions in Australia; improving the ADF’s ability to operate from Australia’s northern bases; and developing initiatives to improve the growth and retention of a highly skilled defense workforce.
  • The development of select critical technology areas under the AUKUS advanced capabilities pillar will be prioritized in the shortest possible time. The pillar includes cooperation on artificial intelligence, advanced cyber, undersea capabilities and hypersonics.


  • There are opportunities for industry to partner with the Defense Department to deliver capability and capacity uplift in the clean energy transition; computing, IT software and hardware integration; manufacturing; logistics and supply chain management; and education and skills development.
  • A review of defense industry policy that is aligned to the recommendations of the Defense Strategic Review will be released in the second half of 2023. However, the government has made clear that Australia’s defense capabilities will take precedence over benefits to local industry.

We will continue to keep you updated on developments in Australia as they occur. If you have any questions or comments, please contact BGA Australia Managing Director Michael “Mick” McNeill at