MANILA – The Philippines has concluded over the weekend the final planning conference for the upcoming Western Pacific Naval Symposium-International Fleet Review (WPNS-IFR), a key naval engagement that the country will host for the first time in May.
In a statement Monday, Philippine Navy public affairs office chief Lt. Commander Maria Christina Roxas said all activities related to the hosting was finalized, including confirming the concept of the IFR plan and related activities, synchronizing the planning of the different phases of execution, and resolving issues and concerns of all parties.
The activity, held at the Diamond Hotel in Manila from February 28-29, was spearheaded by the Fleet-Marine Warfare Center of the Naval Education, Training, and Doctrine Command and attended by representatives from 17 participating countries, several Philippine government agencies, and non-government partners.
Navy flag-officer-in-command Rear Admiral Giovanni Carlo Bacordo earlier said the WPNS is a confidence-building measure with the aim to show that navies can work together for a common cause.
“WPNS is a confidence-building activity. (This shows that) we are navies that (can) work together for a common cause. Hindi ‘yung navies na kanya-kanya (Navies work together, not individually),” he said.
One of the highlights of the WPNS is the IFR, an international maritime exercise that aims to promote cooperation and strengthen ties among participating navies around the world, he said. The IFR will be held on May 21 off Manila Bay.
The country’s first missile frigate, the BRP Jose Rizal (FF-150), will be leading the PN contingent in the IFR. (PNA)