Features, canada, defence, feat

By Godfrey Nthunzi | June 5, 2018

Canada's new Defence Investment Plan and Defence Capabilities Blueprint reveals unseen levels of detail surrounding defence spending and specific projects for the next twenty years - including funding ranges, project timelines, investment areas, and sponsors. Here's how you can access that data.

Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan announced the release of Canada's first Defence Investment Plan at CANSEC. The Defence Investment Plan outlines how the Royal Canadian Navy, the Canadian Army, the Royal Canadian Air Force and the Canadian Special Operations Forces Command will be funded in the next 20 years.

"For the very first time, Canadians have a first-hand look at how the funds to deliver this policy will be used, and a view of how Defence is planning these investments."

The Defence Investment Plan will also explain the reasoning behind funding decisions made by the Defence Team, an integrated unit composed of Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) personnel and Department of National Defence (DND) civilian employees.

The Defence Investment Plan is not a policy document as its underlying policy is Strong, Secure, Engaged nor is it an operational planning report as it does not specify precise timings. Instead, DIP should be seen as a source of information that will facilitate planning surrounding the complex investment, capability, and fiscal considerations required to implement Canada’s defence commitments."

All capital projects over $5 million and services contracts over $20 million will be included. DIP will be updated annually and reset every three years.


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The Defence Capabilities Blueprint: A database of 200 future defence projects

The Defence Investment Plan has created a new online tool and database of over 200 defence projects: the Defence Capabiltiies Blueprint.

The successor to the Defence Acquisition Guide, the Defence Capabiltiies Blueprint outlines planning information such as funding ranges, project timelines, and the spectrum of investment areas of interest to National Defence.

The Defence Capabiltiies Blueprint database can be searched through the following parameters:

  • Defence Capability Areas (DCAs) are 13 broad component categories, such as Land, Sea, Air, Space, and Cyber. These categories are further comprised of smaller constituent components of more than 150 Defence Capability Investment Areas (DCIAs). Examples of DCIAs are commercial pattern vehicles, ship parts and components, or avionics. Projects may include more than one DCA and several DCIAs.
  • Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada’s Key Industrial Capabilities (KICs). These capability areas inform industry about which key business activities are government priorities in defence procurement. KICs are significant factors in the design, rating, and weighting of Value Propositions.

All future capital equipment and infrastructure projects over $5 million and support contracts valued over $20 million will be included.


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Breaking down Strong, Secure, Engaged (SSE)

In June 2017, Canada's new defence policy Strong, Secure, Engaged (SSE) identified defence priorities and projects and outlined capital spending totaling $108 billion on an accrual basis ($164 billion on a cash basis), along with operating expenditures of $283.7 billion and sustainment expenditures of roughly $105.4 billion over 20 years.

The $108 billion consists of 281 projects previously approved in Defence Investment Plan 2014 and 52 new projects.

The tables below from the Defence Investment Plan illustrates how this capital will be put to work over the duration of the policy.


SSE will increase annual cash defence spending from $18.9 billion in 2016-17 to $32.7 billion in 2026-27. Total defence spending over 20 years will be $553 billion on a cash basis, allowing National Defence to increase the size of the Canadian Armed Forces.

The graph below shows the total defence budget, not just capital investments, of National Defence over 40 years to show the 70% increase in SSE cash commitments.




Godfrey Nthunzi

Godfrey graduated from Rotman Commerce at the University of Toronto with a BComm in Management. Since graduating, he has gained extensive experience in the Information Technology industry in functions including sales, recruiting and operations. With this passion for startups and the technology sector, Godfrey has co-created a digital space to share experiences and best practices, and is host of a podcast series featuring young, upcoming entrepreneurs.

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