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Purposes are defined in the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 (PGPA Act) as ‘the objectives, functions or role’ of an entity. Defence’s primary role is to protect and advance Australia’s strategic interests through the promotion of security and stability, the provision of military capabilities to defend Australia and its national interests, and the provision of support for the Australian community and civilian authorities as directed by Government.

As stated in the 2019–20 Defence Corporate Plan, the Defence purpose is:

Purpose: Defend and protect Australia and advance its strategic interests.

Further information on Defence’s purpose is in the Corporate Plan, which is available at
www.defence.gov.au/publications/corporateplan/. Defence’s performance in achieving its purpose during the 2019–20 reporting period is described in Chapter 3—‘Annual performance statements’.