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Naval exercises reaffirm India's Act East Policy: Ashraf

Singapore, May 16 (UNI) India's bilateral and multilateral naval exercises reaffirm its Act East Policy, says High Commissioner to Singapore Jawed Ashraf.
The Indian Navy's regular participation in the IMDEX and SIMBEX also showed the importance India attaches to the exercises and the strategic partnership with Singapore, Ashraf said at a reception on board INS Kolkata on Wednesday.
The reception was hosted by the High Commissioner Jawed Ashraf and Vice Admiral MS Pawar, Deputy Chief of Naval Staff on the occasion of IMDEX-19.
"Regular participation by the Indian Navy in the IMDEX and SIMBEX reflects the importance India attaches to the exercises and the broader strategic partnership with Singapore; and it also reaffirms our Act East Policy," he said.
India and Singapore share a strong and rapidly growing defence relation whic his the key pillar of India Singapore strategic partnership based on deep mutual trust and goodwill and shared interest in rules-based order, maritime security and an open, inclusive and peaceful Indo-Pacific region.
The defence relations include annual ministerial dialogue, Secretary-level defence policy dialogue, Staff talks between the three wings of the armed forces, mutual logistics support, regular exercises and exchange of ship visits.
Naval Ships Kolkata and Shakti participated in the 12th edition of International Maritime Defence Exhibition Asia 2019 (IMDEX Asia-2019) from May 14 to 16.
INS Kolkata is an advanced stealth destroyer capable of engaging multiple threats from the air, sea and underwater, and has been designed and built in India.
INS Shakti is a fleet support ship to provide fuel, provisions and munitions to warships at sea.

India was also represented by leading engineering and ship building firm Larsen & Toubro, and BrahMos which makes state of the art air, sea and ground launch cruise missiles.

Following IMDEX, Indian Naval ships together with an Indian Navy aircraft P8I, will participate in the 26th edition of SIMBEX from May 16 to 22.
SIMBEX is the longest uninterrupted naval exercise that India has with any other country. The 26th SIMBEX is taking place six months after the last edition which took place in the Andaman Sea and Bay of Bengal from November 11 to 21, 2018 and involved live weapon firings and complex military maneuvers, including those of aircraft and submarines.
The Indian Army and the Singapore Army recently held their 12th edition ofthe Annual Exercise Bold Kurukshetra, an annual joint training exercise for Armoured Units from 8-12 April 2019, at the Indian Army training facility at Babina in Uttar Pradesh.
Likewise, Air Forces of both countries will exercise together later this year in India, said a High Commission release.

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