A total of €106 million has been allocated for 2019 for capital expenditure in Vote 36 Defence. This is in accordance with the National Development Plan, which provides for an overall capital allocation of €541m for Defence for the period 2018 to 2022. This capital funding will allow the Defence Organisation to undertake a programme of sustained equipment replacement and infrastructure development as identified in the White Paper.
The main categories of expenditure in the 2019 capital allocation are as follows:
- Capability Development = €70m;
- Built Infrastructure = €19m;
- Military Transport = €6m;
- Defence Forces Communication and Information Technology Equipment = €5m;
- Other Equipment = €6m.
The following major projects are being progressed during 2019:
- Mid-life upgrade of the Mowag Armoured Personnel Carriers (APCs) fleet;
- Procurement of Fixed Wing Utility aircraft (Pilatus) as replacement for Cessna aircraft;
- Procurement of replacements for the two CASA 235 Maritime Patrol aircraft;
- Mid-life refit of the Naval Service vessels LÉ Niamh and LÉ Roisín and ongoing planning for the acquisition of a multi-role vessel;
- Virtual Desktop Architecture (VDA) project for Defence Forces IT infrastructure;
- Equipment renewal and replacement programmes along with investment in further force protection, transport, communications and information technology, weapons and ammunition systems;
- Investment in the Defence Forces built infrastructure, including the following specific projects -
- Secure storage facilities in the Defence Forces Training Centre, Curragh Camp;
- Target range facilities in the Defence Forces Training Centre;
- Training facilities in Sarsfield Barracks, Limerick and Stephens Barracks, Kilkenny;
- Accommodation facilities in the Defence Forces Training Centre and Cathal Brugha Barracks, Dublin;
- Accommodation upgrade in Casement Aerodrome, Baldonnel;
- Catering facilities in Custume Barracks, Athlone;
- Fuel storage safety system upgrade in the Naval Base, Haulbowline.
Major Defence capital projects are multi annual in nature and expenditure on these can span a number of years. I am satisfied that the capital allocation for Defence for 2019 and for the period to 2022 will allow the Defence Organisation to undertake a programme of sustained equipment replacement and infrastructural development as identified and prioritised in the White Paper.