WASHINGTON — Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. Mike Gilday conducted a video teleconference Oct. 6, with Rear Adm. Aaron Beng Yao Cheng, Republic of Singapore Chief of Navy, the CNO’s public affairs office said in a release.
The two leaders discussed engagement between the two navies this past year, which included RIMPAC 2020, as well as ways to further deepen cooperation between the two navies going forward.
“I am grateful to Republic of Singapore for their partnership and friendship – and we greatly value the contributions their Navy brings to the maritime domain,” Gilday said. “I am excited to work closely with Rear Adm. Beng and the Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN) for years to come to ensure a free and open Indo-Pacific.”
Gilday also thanked Beng for continuing to host commander, Logistics Group Western Pacific in Sembawang and supporting the forward-deployment of Destroyer Squadron 7 and littoral combat ships, like USS Gabrielle Giffords (LCS 10).
Beng said the Republic of Singapore Navy and the United States Navy share a unique and long- standing relationship underpinned by mutual trust and shared values.
“We have maintained a steady cadence of professional interactions over the last few months, which further underscores the strength of this partnership,” Beng said. “Our navies conducted a passage exercise in May, the RSN frigate RSS Supreme (73) deployed to RIMPAC 2020, and ships from both navies will conduct a bilateral CARAT exercise in December. We will continue to seek opportunities to strengthen cooperation, including resuming face-to-face interactions when the situation allows.”
The U.S. and Singaporean navies recently exercised bilateral interoperability in the South China Sea and jointly participated in a virtual Southeast Asia Cooperation and Training (SEACAT) symposium. The two navies operate together during exercises like Pacific Griffin 2019, the most advanced naval training between the two nations to date.
This VTC was the first between the two leaders since Beng took office in March 2020.