Navy stars at Pacific 2013

Published on Mr Michael Brooke (author), ABIS Nicolas Gonzalez (photographer)

Location(s): Sydney, NSW

Topic(s): Sea Power Conference, International Fleet Review

Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Ray Griggs AO, CSC, RAN addresses the Pacific 2013 Welcome Breakfast and Official Opening Ceremony at the Sydney Convention Centre. (photo: ABIS Nicolas Gonzalez)
Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Ray Griggs AO, CSC, RAN addresses the Pacific 2013 Welcome Breakfast and Official Opening Ceremony at the Sydney Convention Centre.

More than 500 sailors flocked to the exhibition hall to gain an insight into some of the new technologies that the Navy and our coalition partners will absorb in the coming decade.

The sailors acted like kids in a candy store, as they surveyed models of the new equipment and listened to product briefings by company executives.

More than 1000 Navy personnel got a peek at the future when the 2013 Sea Power Conference opened at Sydney’s Darling Harbour on 7 October.

The Sea Power Conference was attended by more than 40 foreign military delegations and was conducted on the sidelines of the IFR.

In his keynote address Chief of Navy (CN) Vice Admiral Ray Griggs AO, CSC, RAN, said the theme of the conference was Naval Diplomacy and Maritime Power Projection: The Utility of Navies in the Maritime Century.

“The 21st Century has been described as a maritime century as much as it is an Asian Century; due to the pervasive nature of global sea trade and the predominantly maritime environment of the Indo-Pacific region,” he said.

CN said this theme would theme examine the contemporary utility of navies as tools of statecraft, from hard and soft power perspectives.

He said Australia’s acquisition of new Canberra-class LHDs and Hobart-class AWDs would allow the ADF to develop its maritime strategy to meet future security challenges.

CN said although Australia faced no immediate conventional threat it was “imperative the ADF develops its maritime capacity to respond effectively to a broad range of possible tasks from the Government.”

He said the conference theme capitalised on the presence of many foreign navies in Sydney for the IFR.

A distinguished group of speakers will present their views at the 2013 conference, including the Service Chiefs.

Other topics on the agenda to be discussed by academics and military leaders include Smart Power and Global Security, Navies and Foreign Policy, Regional Engagement and Power Projection, Naval Diplomacy and Maritime Power Projection, and a Maritime School of Strategic Thought.

The exhibitors included the manufacturers and supplies of new maritime technologies for the AEGIS-equipped Hobart-class DDGs, Canberra-class LHDs, and Romeo maritime helicopters.