Maritime show features record numbers

Visitors looking at the model of a Type-218SG submarine, which will be added to the Republic of Singapore Navy's fleet from 2024, during the Imdex Asia 2017 Maritime Defence Show at Changi Exhibition Centre on May 16, 2017.
Visitors looking at the model of a Type-218SG submarine, which will be added to the Republic of Singapore Navy's fleet from 2024, during the Imdex Asia 2017 Maritime Defence Show at Changi Exhibition Centre on May 16, 2017. ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM
An autonomous underwater vehicle being exhibited at ST Engineering's booth during the Imdex Asia 2017 Maritime Defence Show at Changi Exhibition Centre on May 16, 2017.
An autonomous underwater vehicle being exhibited at ST Engineering's booth during the Imdex Asia 2017 Maritime Defence Show at Changi Exhibition Centre on May 16, 2017. ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM
Visitors browsing the exhibits at ST Engineering's booth during the Imdex Asia 2017 Maritime Defence Show at Changi Exhibition Centre on May 16, 2017.
Visitors browsing the exhibits at ST Engineering's booth during the Imdex Asia 2017 Maritime Defence Show at Changi Exhibition Centre on May 16, 2017. ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM
Visitors browsing the exhibits, such as the models of the Vanguard series and Independence 80, at ST Engineering's booth during the Imdex Asia 2017 Maritime Defence Show at Changi Exhibition Centre on May 16, 2017.
Visitors browsing the exhibits, such as the models of the Vanguard series and Independence 80, at ST Engineering's booth during the Imdex Asia 2017 Maritime Defence Show at Changi Exhibition Centre on May 16, 2017. ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM
The model of a Type-218SG submarine, which will be added to the Republic of Singapore Navy's fleet from 2024, on exhibition at the Imdex Asia 2017 Maritime Defence Show at Changi Exhibition Centre on May 16, 2017.
The model of a Type-218SG submarine, which will be added to the Republic of Singapore Navy's fleet from 2024, on exhibition at the Imdex Asia 2017 Maritime Defence Show at Changi Exhibition Centre on May 16, 2017. ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM

Amid maritime tensions and disputes that continue to simmer in the region, a record number of maritime defence and naval forces will attend the biennial three-day Imdex Asia, which begins today.

On top of navy chiefs, coast guard directors-general, and representatives of navies and coast guards from over 40 countries, 28 foreign warships from 20 navies will be at the maritime defence show, held at the Changi Exhibition Centre.

The show has grown to become a key platform to focus on regional maritime and naval security, as well as defence cooperation, as it provides a neutral platform for stakeholders to engage constructively, said Mr Leck Chet Lam, managing director of Experia Events, the organiser of Imdex Asia 2017.

And the role of such platforms is growing, amid tensions in the region, said maritime expert Collin Koh from the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies.

"This year is more stable compared to last year, when we had a number of unresolved issues... But what drives the growing interest in maritime forces is the continued geopolitical uncertainty," he added.

 
 

This year's show will also feature its largest exhibition, with 230 participating companies from 29 countries.

Charmaine Ng

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 16, 2017, with the headline 'Maritime show features record numbers'. Print Edition | Subscribe