Navy’s Maritime Trade Operations capability has been provided a remarkable ‘fact-finding’ opportunity to augment planning processes that will protect Australian seaborne trade and the nation’s economic prosperity.
Commander Fiona Ewington was recently selected as one of 109 Australians heralded as the 2017 Churchill Fellows, and will travel overseas to examine how Australia’s allied partners go about their business protecting trade interests and upholding the safety of seaborne trade.
As a recipient of the prestigious Fellowship, Commander Ewington will travel to the United Kingdom, Germany, Greece, Portugal and the United States of America with the ‘end-game’ of delivering military doctrine that will strengthen Navy’s ability to support Defence and Allied maintenance of Freedom of Navigation.
Commander Ewington said that protecting maritime shipping and trade is a core function of the Royal Australian Navy and expertise in this area is provided by a group of maritime industry specialists known as Maritime Trade Operations Team One.
“We act as the interface between the Australian Defence Force and commercial maritime industry to promote the safety of seaborne trade and deconflict maritime industry operations in the battlespace,” Commander Ewington said.
“Being selected as a Churchill Fellow is a tremendous opportunity to learn a body of knowledge from organisations like the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation Shipping Working Group members to develop military doctrine on Maritime Trade Operations.
“The project outcome will bridge the gap in guidance regarding operational employment, to better inform military planning processes, and facilitate a broader understanding by planning staff on the value add in the joint operating environment by this niche capability,” she said.
Among other duties, Commander Ewington is currently on the Directing Staff of the Royal Australian Navy Staff Acquaint Course at the Australian Defence College and is accustomed to overseas travel having spent nearly six years in Canada and France with her young family.
The Winston Churchill Memorial Trust was established in 1965 to honour the memory of Sir Winston Churchill, and fulfil his wish to offer people from all walks of life, the opportunity to travel overseas to gain new knowledge and insights that can be practically applied in Australia to positively impact our communities and society at large.
Further details on the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust can be found here: www.churchilltrust.com.au