UK hosts first Joint Expeditionary Force (Maritime) conference

The Royal Navy recently hosted the first Joint Expeditionary Force (Maritime) conference in Portsmouth headed by Fleet Commander Vice-Admiral Ben Key and Commander of UK Maritime Forces Rear Admiral Alex Burton.

The UK, with partner nations Denmark, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands and Norway, formed JEF in September 2016, with the memorandum of understanding being signed aboard HMS Duncan.

JEF is an integrated and adaptable high-readiness force which offers the government options when faced with an overseas crisis that demands a military response.

During the conference, commanders of partner nations explored the role of JEF(M) in support of NATO, as well as looking at training and evaluation practices.

JEF can also integrate into a larger international force, such as NATO for a multinational response to a strategic threat.

Topics discussed included JEF(M) leadership in the Baltic Sea and increased collaboration in the North Atlantic to support NATO.

Rear Admiral Burton said: “It was a real privilege to meet the naval commanders from our JEF partner nations for the first time. I look forward to strengthening our working relationship in the future.”