Navies of India and Singapore today began a seven-day-long mega maritime exercise in the South China Sea which has been witnessing a growing Chinese assertiveness. Four warships of the Indian Navy and long range anti- submarine warfare aircraft P-8l are participating in the SIMBEX (Singapore-India Maritime Bilateral Exercise), which is aimed at increasing interoperability between the two navies.
A diverse range of operational activities at sea have been planned during the course of the exercise. “The thrust of exercises at sea this year would be on Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW), integrated operations with surface, air and sub-surface forces, air defence and surface encounter exercises,” Navy Spokesperson Capt D K Sharma said.
A number of warships of Singapore Navy are participating in the exercise along with maritime patrol aircraft Fokker F50 and F-16 aircraft. Held since 1994, it is the 24th edition of the annual exercise between the two countries.