Defence Minister Linda Reynolds announced the Royal Australian Navy and the Indian Navy demonstrated their interoperability during a recent passage exercise in the north-east Indian Ocean.
HMAS Hobart sailed in company with INS Sahyadri and Karmuk, highlighting the close working relationship between the Royal Australian Navy and the Indian Navy.
Minister for Defence Linda Reynolds said the successful exercise with India reflects the strength of the countries’ relationship as comprehensive strategic partners.
“We continue to enhance our engagement with like-minded countries, such as India, in support of a shared vision for a more secure, open, inclusive and prosperous Indo-Pacific,” Minister Reynolds explained.
The passage exercise is part of the Royal Australian Navy’s Regional Presence Deployment through south-east Asia and the Pacific.
Minister Reynolds added, “Our Defence relationship with India is at an historic high point after the Prime Ministers’ Virtual Summit earlier this year, and I look forward to further developing our comprehensive partnership into the future.”
The engagement provided both nations with an opportunity to practice a range of naval activities, including combined manoeuvres and surface warfare serials.
The Australia-India Comprehensive Strategic Partnership (CSP), signed by Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi in June 2020.
The CSP is based on mutual understanding, trust, common interests and the shared values of democracy and rule of law. It reflects India and Australia’s strong commitment to practical global co-operation to address major challenges like COVID-19.
Prime Minister Morrison said at the time of ratifying the agreement, “The CSP takes our bilateral relationship to a new level of co-operation, based on mutual understanding, trust, common interests and the shared values of democracy and the rule of law.
“It reflects Australia and India’s strong commitment to working together at a time of unprecedented global challenges, such as COVID-19.
“Our partnership is in line with India's increasing engagement in the Indo-Pacific region through her Indo-Pacific vision and Australia's Indo-Pacific approach and its Pacific Step-Up for the south Pacific.”
Both countries share the vision of an open, free, rules-based Indo-Pacific region supported by inclusive global and regional institutions that promote prosperous, stable and sovereign states on the basis of shared interests.