ASEAN naval exercises formally end in Singapore

MANILA This year's ASEAN Defense Ministers' Meeting - Plus Maritime Security Field Training Exercise (ADMM-Plus MARSEC FTX) 2019 formally concluded in Changi, Singapore on Monday.

The closing ceremonies took place at the naval base, RSS Singapura. The Philippines' BRP Andres Bonifacio (PS-17), one of the country's most capable offshore patrol vessels, joined 18 other warships, 10 aircraft, and more than 1,500 personnel during the exercise conducted in the waters off Busan and eastern Singapore from April 29 to May 13.

The Philippine Navy (PN) had achieved its goal in this exercise. We were able to enhance our maritime operational capability to multilateral level, thereby increasing our readiness and interoperability while engaging our partner navies, Navy contingent head and Naval Task Group 80.6 commander, Capt. Roy Vincent T. Trinidad, said in a statement Wednesday.

The Navy, while in Singapore, is expected to participate in other activities, such as the Maritime Information Sharing Exercise 2019 that coincides with the 10th Anniversary Commemoration of the Information Fusion Center and the International Maritime Defense Exhibition 2019.

The PN's participation in these international engagements manifested its commitment in promoting multilateral cooperation in a multinational environment for peace and stability among ASEAN and other regional navies.

ADMM-Plus MARSEC FTX 2019 was co-chaired by the Republic of Korea (ROK) and Singapore. Participating navies arrived at Changi Naval Base last May 12, after a weeklong transit from the Republic of Korea to Singapore.

The second part of the ADMM-Plus MARSEC FTX 2019 took place, with the Singapore Navy as co-host. In this phase, an exercise on information-sharing to track vessels of interest was conducted, along with cross-deck landings and replenishment-at-sea drills. Australia, Japan, Thailand, and Vietnam joined in the second part of the exercise, which culminated in a photo exercise.

Singaporean Chief-of-Defense Force, Lt. Gen. Melvyn Ong, presided over the closing ceremony where he thanked all the participants for the commitment rendered in this exercise, saying it reflects the abiding value of the ADMM-Plus to regional security with the aim to strengthen peace and stability in the region.

This year's exercise continues with the same aim of focusing on practical cooperation; build up trust and confidence within the ADMM plus navies, Ong said.

This is an opportunity for us to strengthen the security and peace and maintain cooperation in the region. Today, all of us are to remain committed to peace and stability, to secure these rules based maritime waters reinforced by practical cooperation, he added. (PNA)

Source: Philippines News Agency