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Defence in the Northern Territory

At the frontline of Australia’s national security, the Northern Territory is home RAAF Base Darwin, RAAF Base Tindal, Robertson Barracks, Pine Gap, the Jindalee Operational Radar Network, HMAS Coonawarra and a regional network of world class military training areas and ranges.  

Defence is a significant contributor to the Territory economy, with defence spending in the National Territory reaching A$2.2 billion in 2021-22. As part of a $20 billion defence commitment, $8 billion will be spent between 2016 and 2025 for defence infrastructure and facilities, providing many opportunities for small-to-medium sized Northern Territory businesses across diverse sectors from heavy engineering through to logistics and scientific testing and analysis.

Responding to a growing need for marine industry services, the NT Government is also investing AU$400 million in development of the Darwin Ship Lift and Marine Industry Park.

Incentives, grants and support 

Skilled individuals and businesses can access advice and support for migrating, investing and working in the Northern Territory. There are financial incentives for business owners as well as government grants to support businesses and individuals to make their mark.

The Darwin Innovation Hub provides startups, scaleups and established businesses with access to extensive networks, information, resources and strategies. It also has grants available through its Entrepreneurs Programme to help eligible applicants grow their business and there’s access to venture capital through the Paspalis Innovation Investment Fund.

Office of Defence Industry Support provides free advisory, guidance and mentoring services to help your business navigate, prepare for and enter the defence market. Through the Advanced Manufacturing Growth Fund and the NT Advanced Manufacturing Ecosystem Fund, advanced manufacturing businesses can be supported to increase competitiveness and grow capabilities. 

Case study

Australian company SPEE3D is using patented metal 3D printing technology to help the Australian defence force solve repair and maintenance problems across the vast training areas of the Northern Territory. The company’s WarpSPEE3D harnesses the power of kinetic energy to print large metal parts at a record-breaking speed of 100grams per minute. After a series of remote Northern Territory trials proved that the technology could be deployed successfully in the field, the Royal Australian Navy and Australian Army have become integral to daily operations. 

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