Japanese Maritime Self Defence Force (JMSDF) helicopter carrier JS Kaga and guided-missile destroyer JS Inazuma arrived at Visakhapatnam, India, on October 7 as part of the Indo-Southeast Asia Deployment 2018.
The JMSDF task group, commanded by Rear Admiral Tatsuya Fukada, Commander, Escort Flotilla-4 (CCF-4), will join their Indian counterparts for the third edition of Japan-India maritime exercise (JIMEX).
Ships from the Indian Navy’s Eastern Fleet will be deployed for the exercise which will run until October 15. JIMEX-18 is aimed to enhance interoperability, improve understanding and imbibe the best practices of each other.
The Indian Navy will be represented by frigate INS Satpura, corvettes and a tanker. In addition, one submarine, P8I maritime patrol aircraft and a number of helicopters would also be participating in the exercise.
Spread over eight days, JIMEX 18 will comprise a harbor phase and a sea phase of four days each. The harbor phase will include professional and social interactions between ship’s crews, sports fixtures and operational planning for the Sea Phase.
The sea phase would include anti-submarine warfare exercises, VBSS (visit, board, search and seizure) drills, gun firings, cross deck helo operations and coordinated operations in anti-submarine/ anti-air threat scenarios.
The last edition of JIMEX was conducted in December 2013 off Chennai.
It is worth noting that JMSDF is a regular participant in the Malabar series of exercises between Indian and US Navies. In addition, the ships of the two navies have been working in close coordination in anti-piracy operations in the Gulf of Aden (GoA) for the past few years.
JMSDF ships also participated in the recently concluded MALABAR 18 off Guam (along with Indian and US Navy units) in the Pacific Ocean in Jun and biennial multilateral exercise RIMPAC-18 off Hawaii, USA.