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National Security System

One of the most important responsibilities of any government is to ensure the security and territorial integrity of the nation, including protecting the institutions that sustain confidence, good governance, and prosperity. For this to happen, the country's national security machinery has to be strategically focused, coordinated, accountable, geared to risk management, and responsive to any challenges that arise. The Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet has responsibility in New Zealand for providing coordinated advice on national security to the government. Recently, DPMC led a wide-ranging review of New Zealand's national security interests. That review was considered by Cabinet in May 2011.

The document entitled "New Zealand's Security System" sets out a comprehensive view of New Zealand's national security interests and describes how Government agencies will work together to manage and respond to national security issues. It provides a broad definition of security and identifies national security risks on an "all-hazards" basis. In recognising that national security risks are dynamic, DPMC works with other government agencies through the ODESC* process to coordinate regular oversight and review of security priorities. From this comes an integrated approach to security risk management, including a national security exercise programme, along with regular advice to Ministers on national security issues and possible mitigation steps.

It is expected that "New Zealand's Security System" will be reviewed from time to time, to ensure that it remains current and relevant to the security risks confronting New Zealand.

*The Officials' Committee on Domestic and External Security Coordination, which is chaired by DPMC.