The fifth edition of exercise IBSAMAR between Brazil, India and South Africa is slated be conducted from 19 – 29 Feb 16 off the West Coast of India, with the Harbour Phase being conducted at Goa. This is the first time that Exercise IBSAMAR is being conducted in Indian waters; all previous editions being held at/off South Africa. The primary aim of this exercise is to increase interoperability amongst the three navies as well as develop common understanding and procedures for maritime security operations.
Naval cooperation between the three countries epitomises the strong long term strategic relationship between the three democracies and vibrant economies. Initiated in 2006, Exercise IBSAMAR is the most visible manifestation of this convergence of democratic values, economic interests and maritime cooperation. The scope and complexity of Exercise IBSAMAR has increased steadily and in its 5th edition in 2016, IBSAMAR has matured into a complex trilateral exercise involving participation of ships, submarine, aircrafts and special forces from Brazil, Indian and South Africa.
The scope of Exercise IBSAMAR –V includes wide-ranging professional interactions during the Harbour Phase and a diverse range of operational activities at sea during the Sea Phase. The thrust of exercises at sea this year would be on Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW), Surface firings, Air Defences, Visit Board Search and Seizure (VBSS), Flying Operations, Search and Rescue and tactical procedures.
During Exercise IBSAMAR-V, the Indian Navy will be represented by INS Mumbai an indigenous designed and built guided missile destroyer, INS Trishul a stealth frigate and INS Shalki a Shishumar class submarine. In addition, various Fast Attack Craft, Sea Harriers and Mig 29K fighter aircraft, Dornier Maritime Patrol Aircraft and integral rotary wing helicopters are also scheduled to participate in the trilateral exercise.
The Brazilian Navy would be represented by Brazilian Naval Ship Amazonas, with embarked Special Forces, Commanded by Commander Alessander Felipe Imamura Carneiro. The South African Navy would be represented by South African Naval Ship SAS Spioenkop with integral helicopter and embarked Special Forces, Commanded by Captain MA Boucher. Both the ships are on return passage after participating in the International Fleet Review (IFR) held at Visakhapatnam from 04 – 08 Feb 16. Commencing at IFR, Exercise IBSAMAR V marks an operational chapter to nearly a month-long interaction of these ships with the Indian Navy.
Ex IBSAMAR highlights the maritime dimension of the IBSA Dialogue Forum and the robust South-South cooperation. The current edition is another significant step in strengthening mutual confidence and inter-operability as well as sharing best practices between the Indian, Brazilian and South African Navies. The exercise will also go a long way in enhancing maritime security in the Indian Ocean Region and beyond, for the benefit of the global maritime community.