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Philippine Navy, Royal Australian Navy hold joint maritime training

The Philippine Navy (PN) and the Royal Australian Navy (RAN) recently conducted a combined maritime training activity codenamed “Exercise LUMBAS 2018” at the Naval Forces Central Area of Responsibility.

The PN said on Monday this training exercise has been conducted annually in the Philippines since 1998. In previous years, it combined maritime training between the PN and the RAN focusing on Maritime Security Operations and Maritime Interdiction Operation. It is conducted in the form of Table Top Exercise (TTX) on odd numbered years with Field Training Exercise on even numbered years.

However, during the Navy to Navy Strategy talks on March 9, 2017, it was decided that Exercise LUMBAS will become an annual Naval Warfare Exercise focusing on the development of PN warfighting capabilities, while multi agency TTX will shift from LUMBAS to Defense Cooperation Program which will fall under the purview of the National Coast Watch Center.

Exercise LUMBAS will focus on addressing transnational crimes, piracy, counter-terrorism, humanitarian assistance and disaster relief and anti-narcotics to align PN efforts with the current government policies.

For this year, the Field Training Exercise was executed in two segments. Segment 1 was the harbor phase. Subject matter expertise exchanges, courtesy call, ship tours and field training operations and conferences and other related pre-sail briefing were held on May 18-19, 2018.

Segment 2, the sea phase, was conducted at the seawaters of Negros Island on May 20-22, 2018, and focused on capability enhancement for Naval Operations and Maritime Security Operations, thus building Common Operating Picture, information sharing and territorial defense related training.

One vessel from RAN (HMAS ANZAC, FFH150), one vessel from PN (BRP RAMON ALCARAZ, FF16) and two aircraft from the Philippine Air Force (FA50) participated in the sea phase. Personnel from both Navy ships also conducted simultaneous visit, board, search and seizure exercise in their respective counterparts navy ship.

One Naval helicopter conducted deck landing proficiency aboard FF16 and FFH150 also during the Field Training Exercise.#