Australia’s flagship regional engagement activity, Indo-Pacific Endeavour (IPE) has commenced and will include visits to 14 countries over a two-month period. IPE supports the government’s commitment to strengthen military partnerships across Southeast Asia and the Northeast Indian Ocean, reinforcing Australia’s commitment to an open, inclusive and resilient region. The activity will include military exercises, workshops, training, sporting events, and cultural activities. It will deepen cooperation on issues ranging from humanitarian assistance and disaster relief to gender, peace and security.
IPE will conduct counter-terrorism cooperation and leadership engagements in the Maldives. Indo-Pacific Endeavour 2022 involves five ships, 11 helicopters, and around 1,800 personnel from all three services of the Australian Defence Force (ADF). This includes HMA Ships Adelaide, Anzac, Arunta, Hobartand Stalwart, members of the Australian Army’s 2nd Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment, and Royal Australian Air Force air mobility aircraft. Also participating this year are representatives from across the Australian government, including the Australian Federal Police, Australian Border Force, Australian defence industry and Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
Indo-Pacific Endeavour 2022 will conduct activities with the Maldives, Timor-Leste, Vietnam, the Philippines, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Laos, Cambodia, India, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei and Indonesia before ships return to Australia by mid-December. This is the first full-scale Indo-Pacific Endeavour since 2019. The activity was cancelled in 2020 and conducted through contactless activities in 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Defence Richard Marles said: “Indo-Pacific Endeavour demonstrates Australia’s commitment to an open, inclusive and resilient region. This is where we live, and we are more secure when we work closely with our partners. Indo-Pacific Endeavour is a chance for our personnel to work, train, and learn from our neighbours. It strengthens our ability to work together when it counts. I thank all of the personnel deployed on IPE22, and their families, for their contribution and service.”
Commodore Mal Wise, commander IPE22, said: “I look forward to leading Indo-Pacific Endeavour 2022 to make new relationships and strengthen our ties in the region. We plan to learn from our partners all the way from India to Indonesia. Regional security is more than a military task. I am pleased that a range of government agencies are contributing to Indo-Pacific Endeavour as we work together to support a peaceful and prosperous neighbourhood.”