Permanent Secretary for Defence and other senior officials visit Exercise Bersama Lima

Permanent Secretary for Defence Mr Chan Yeng Kit (second from left) and senior officials of the FPDA member nations being briefed on board RSS Formidable during Ex Bersama Lima. -- PHOTO: MINISTRY OF DEFENCE
Permanent Secretary for Defence Mr Chan Yeng Kit (second from left) and senior officials of the FPDA member nations being briefed on board RSS Formidable during Ex Bersama Lima. -- PHOTO: MINISTRY OF DEFENCE
Navy chiefs and representatives of the FPDA nations at the opening of Exercise Bersama Lima 2014 on 8 Oct. -- PHOTO: MINISTRY OF DEFENCE
Navy chiefs and representatives of the FPDA nations at the opening of Exercise Bersama Lima 2014 on 8 Oct. -- PHOTO: MINISTRY OF DEFENCE

SINGAPORE - Permanent Secretary for Defence Chan Yeng Kit and senior officials from the Five Power Defence Arrangements (FPDA) member-nations visited Exercise Bersama Lima 2014 on Thursday.

The exercise, which takes place from Oct 7 to 21, is hosted by Singapore.

The officials visited the Multinational Operations and Exercise Centre (MOEC) where they were briefed on the scope of the exercise, which comprised a joint operation in a simulated "multi-threat" environment for the defence of Malaysia and Singapore, the Ministry of Defence (Mindef) said in a statement.

The officials were also briefed on the Changi Regional Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief Crisis Centre and interacted with the FPDA participating forces from Australia, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore and the United Kingdom both at sea and on shore.

Exercise Bersama Lima 2014 involves 4,000 personnel, one submarine, 15 ships, 58 aircraft, three dive teams, four Ground-Based Air Defence units and various support elements from the FPDA member nations.

The exercise participants completed a shore phase exercise at the MOEC at the Changi Command and Control Centre, before executing manoeuvres in the South China Sea and Peninsula Malaysia. Chief of Navy Rear-Admiral Lai Chung Han officiated at the opening ceremony on Oct 8.

As part of Exercise Bersama Lima 2014, participants from all five FPDA militaries conducted urban operations training and static individual live-firing. The exercise also involved a fighter cross-deployment between the Republic of Singapore Air Force and the Royal Malaysian Air Force, while the FPDA navies participated in the Maritime Force Integration Training.

"Ex Bersama Lima has come a long way. Over the years, it has taken on a greater joint and combined focus, not only at sea and in the air, but also in the command post exercise. This year's exercise continues in this direction of strengthening joint and combined operations with the inclusion of the land component in the field training exercise for the very first time. The exercise has been successful in facilitating the sharing of knowledge and experiences amongst the exercise participants," said Exercise Director, Rear-Admiral Timothy Lo.

Formed in 1971, the FPDA plays an important role in the regional security architecture, continually adapting to remain relevant in the face of an evolving regional security environment.

The Singapore Armed Forces' regular participation in FPDA exercises is a testament to Singapore's strong commitment to the FPDA, Mindef said in the statement.