HMAS Anzac has reached 22 years of commissioned service on an eventful day that also marked the opening of bilateral Exercise LUMBAS in Cebu, Philippines.
A team from Anzac embarked the Philippine Navy (PN) Gregorio del Pilar-class frigate BRP Ramon Alcaraz for the opening ceremony while both ships were alongside for the Exercise LUMBAS shore phase. The event was attended by local military leaders and the Australian Ambassador to the Philippines, Her Excellency Amanda Gorely.
LUMBAS is an annual exercise aimed at strengthening ties and developing interoperability between the Philippines and Australia. During the shore phase, RAN and PN personnel participated in lectures, workshops, social activities and sporting events. The sea phase will enable ship’s companies of HMAS Anzac and BRP Ramon Alcaraz to put theory into practice as they sail together for a number of maritime exercises and cross-decking activities.
Commanding Officer HMAS Anzac, Commander Michael Devine, said Exercise LUMBAS was a valuable opportunity to work with the PN during the South East Asia Deployment.
“The LUMBAS shore phase has marked the second time the RAN has been hosted by the Philippines during Anzac’s South East Asia Deployment.
“We look forward to conducting exercises with the PN at sea and building a strong military-to-military relationship.
“It is also fitting that we celebrated Anzac’s 22 year commissioning milestone while deployed and engaging with our close neighbours,” Commander Devine said.
On completion of the LUMBAS opening ceremony, Philippine Navy members of BRP Ramon Alcaraz and Headquarters Naval Forces Central embarked Anzac for an official reception featuring Australian-inspired food and a Ceremonial Sunset.
The Australian Defence Force has a long-standing and valued relationship with the Armed Forces of the Philippines.
HMA Ships Anzac, Toowoomba and Success have deployed to the region for approximately three months, visiting a number of ports to build partner capacity and develop interoperability in the region.