Chief of Navy, Royal Australian Navy Vice Admiral Hammond was on a three-day visit to India from March 9-11, 2023

Meeting in New Delhi on Friday, Indian Navy Chief Admiral Hari Kumar and his Australian counterpart Vice Admiral Mark Hammond explored avenues to strengthen the growing cooperation between the two navies.

During their meeting, they also discussed cooperative ways to deal with prevalent and emerging maritime security challenges, and initiatives to enhance collaboration and interoperability towards realisation of a Free, Open and Inclusive Indo-Pacific/ IOR, India’s Ministry of Defence said after the meeting.

The meeting came on a day when Prime Minister Narendra Modi described defence cooperation as an important pillar of the India-Australia Comprehensive Strategic Partnership. Defence and security cooperation was one of the key issues on the agenda during Prime Minister Modi’s Summit meeting with visiting Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese in New Delhi on Friday.

A day before the first in-person India-Australia Summit, Prime Minister Albanese had also gone on board the Indian Navy’s indigenous Aircraft Carrier INS Vikrant in Mumbai, Maharashtra.

Chief of Navy, Royal Australian Navy Vice Admiral Hammond is on a three-day official visit to India from March 9-11, 2023. The visit was marked by an impressive Guard of Honour on the South Block Lawns to welcome Vice Admiral Hammond.

According to the Ministry of Defence, the Indian Navy closely cooperates with the Royal Australian Navy on numerous issues, including operational interactions such as AUSINDEX, KAKADU and P8 operations. This is in addition to training exchanges, exchange of White Shipping Information and Subject Matter Experts in various fields, all of which are coordinated through the medium of Staff Talks meetings conducted annually.

Warships from both Navies regularly make port calls at each other’s ports and interact in multilateral exercises such as MALABAR, RIMPAC, LaPerouse. Both Navies have also been cooperating towards exploring new avenues for collaboration in the areas of Defence industries, Defence innovation and emerging Defence technologies in support of ‘Make in India’ vision, the Ministry of Defence pointed out.

The ministry added that the visit by Australian Navy Chief Vice Admiral Mark Hammond is an important event in the continued and regular dialogue between Indian Navy and the Royal Australian Navy, and it reinforces the Navy to Navy cooperation in keeping with the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership between the two countries.