Twenty-six nations, 46 surface ships, five submarines, 18 national land forces, more than 200 aircraft and 25,000 personnel will engage in the world’s largest international maritime exercise, the RIMPAC, Rim of the Pacific biennial exercise this June 27th to August 2, 2018 around Hawaiian Islands and Southern California, this according to IMPAC briefing with Asia Pacific Media.

The RIMPAC will be led by Commander 3rd Fleet Vice Admiral John D. Alexander, who will serve as Combined Task Force (CTF) commander.

The 2018 RIMPAC theme is “Capable, Adaptive, Partners”, with objective to ensure safety and security of sea lanes of world’s connected oceans.  The exercise is meant to provide training as well as foster cooperative relationships.

The exercise will demonstrate wide range of capabilities and flexibilities of various nations’ maritime forces.  The training program will include amphibious operations, gunnery, missile, anti-submarine and air defense exercises, counter-piracy operations, mine clearances, explosive ordinance disposal, and salvage operations.

Countries participating this year include forces from Australia, Brazil, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Colombia, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Israel, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Peru, the Republic of Korea, the Republic of the Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Tonga, the United Kingdom, the United States and Vietnam.

It will be the first time for Brazil, Israel, Sri Lanka and Vietnam to participate. People’s Republic of China was present in 2016 RIMPAC but is not present this year.

RIMPAC 2018 is the 26th exercise in the series that began in 1971.  (PR)