Bond with Singapore reaffirmed at 25th iteration of exercise

This article has photo gallery Published on LEUT Tanalee Smith (author), LSIS Christopher Szumlanski (photographer)

Location(s): Singapore

Topic(s): HMAS Sirius (A266), HMAS Hobart (D39), Exercise SINGAROO, Regional Presence Deployment

HMA Ships Hobart and Sirius exercise with Republic of Singapore Ships Tenacious, Valiant, Valour and Dauntless in waters off Singapore during Exercise SINGAROO. (photo: LSIS Christopher Szumlanski)
HMA Ships Hobart and Sirius exercise with Republic of Singapore Ships Tenacious, Valiant, Valour and Dauntless in waters off Singapore during Exercise SINGAROO.

The Australian and Singapore navies have reunited at sea for the 25th iteration of Exercise SINGAROO.

The biennial maritime exercise tests warfare skills, enhances interoperability and reinforces the strong friendship of the two nations.

HMA Ships Hobart and Sirius are taking part in the three-day exercise in the waters off Singapore as part of the Regional Presence Deployment.

Commanding Officer HMAS Hobart Commander Ryan Gaskin said he was looking forward to the integration of the two navies in warfare training.

HMA Ships Hobart and Sirius exercise with Republic of Singapore Ships Tenacious, Valiant, Valour and Dauntless in waters off Singapore during Exercise SINGAROO.

HMA Ships Hobart and Sirius exercise with Republic of Singapore Ships Tenacious, Valiant, Valour and Dauntless in waters off Singapore during Exercise SINGAROO.

“For as long as I have been in the Royal Australian Navy, I have been coming to Singapore to participate in Exercise SINGAROO,” Commander Gaskin said.

“It is one of my favourite maritime exercises because of the relations it has forged, and continues to forge, between our officers and sailors.

“While COVID-19 means we won’t be able to interact in person this year, I am grateful for the opportunity to overcome these challenges and celebrate the 25th iteration of Exercise Singaroo and the longstanding partnerships our countries share.”

The biennial exercise comprises anti-air, anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare, including live-fire exercises.

On 5 July, a RAN task group embarked on the deployment to conduct exercises within South-East Asia and the Pacific.

Commander of the Task Group Captain Phillipa Hay said the two navies had trained together several times already during the deployment.

“It has been a great pleasure to operate and exercise with the Singaporean Navy during this deployment as we both truly value these opportunities to work together at sea,” Captain Hay said.

“Not only does it prove our interoperability but it demonstrates our shared commitment to our strong friendship that endures even during challenging times like this pandemic.”

Commanding Officer HMAS Sirius Commander Sam Woolrych said this year’s exercise was especially important.

“I have exercised with and worked alongside Singapore armed forces many times throughout my career, and it’s fantastic to be back again to participate in Exercise SINGAROO,” Commander Woolrych said.

“SINGAROO remains an important exercise for our navies and this is a reflection of the bonds of shared history, the deep trust and respect between our people, and our desire to continue to build our interoperability in to the future.”

The task group is on its way home after the successful completion of Exercise Rim of the Pacific 2020 in Hawaii.