Indian Navy Ship (INS) Sahyadri (F-49), a Shivalik-class guided missile frigate, along with Kamorta-class anti submarine warfare corvette INS Kiltan (P-30)arrived at Pier 15 in South Harbor, Manila on October 23 commencing a four-day goodwill visit to the Philippines.
The visiting contingent from Indian Navy’s Eastern Naval Command is composed of around 350 navy personnelheaded by the commanding officer of F-49 Capt. Ashwin Arvind. A welcome ceremony at the pier was accorded by Philippine Navy (PN) delegates headed by Sealift Amphibious Force Commander Capt. Ernesto Baldovino followed by a port briefing about security and health aboard F-49.
In his statement, Captain Arvind described the relationship of India and its navy with the Philippines as “very important” which is “evident from the high-level exchange of visit” citing the recent state visit of their president. He further specified the importance of maintaining “beyond just professional” friendship with the PN as strategic since “the importance of Indo-Pacific region is intricately linked with the Philippines”.
As part of their visit, Captain Arvind together with leading officers of the IN contingent will render a courtesy call to the acting Navy Chief, Rear Adm.Giovanni Carlo Bacordo at the PN headquarters. Series of confidence building engagements between PN and IN personnel will also be conducted such as goodwill games and reciprocal receptions that would create a venue for cultural exchanges.
Moreover, PN personnel will also be given a chance to tour and familiarize with the vessels to enhance their knowledge in concept of Indian naval operations and equipment especially that these ships represent the ‘coming-of-age’ of India’s warship building capabilities.
Their arrival to the country is part of IN’s Overseas Deployment to South East Asia and Western Pacific.Before heading to the Philippines, the two vessels aided Japan after being battered by Typhoon Hagibis.
Indian Navy regularly visits the country and engages with their Filipino counterparts which manifest a sustained promotion of regional peace and stability and enhancement of maritime cooperation. It further highlights the military facet of India-Philippines relations established in 1949 and further cemented with the signing of Treaty of Friendship in 1952. It also coincides with the recent state visit of Indian President Ram Nath Kovind which added significance to the commemoration of the two countries’ 70th year of diplomatic relations. NAVY.MIL.PH