Our constitutional role

The Secretary of Defence is the Government’s lead civilian advisor on Defence, and the Chief of Defence Force is the Government’s lead military advisor, as well as the Defence Forces’ senior military officer.

These roles, as well as the Ministry of Defence’s responsibility for purchasing Defence equipment, are set out in the Defence Act 1990.

While the two agencies can be thought of as having distinct responsibilities, we work together every day to carry them out.

How Defence works together

Diagram showing the way Defence work is split between the Ministry and NZDF