The Australian Defence Drive (ADF) has assisted regional companions in detecting and deterring unlawful fishing exercise within the Pacific throughout the newest iteration of Operation Solania. ADF members additionally supplied help (remotely resulting from COVID-19) to the Pacific Islands Discussion board Fisheries Company (FFA) with intelligence gathering and evaluation to help the surveillance actions of countries collaborating within the FFA’s Operation KuruKuru. The Royal Australian Navy’s HMAS Wollongong labored with the Papua New Guinea Defence Drive’s (PNGDF) HMPNGS Rochus Lokinap to conduct maritime surveillance within the Unique Financial Zone of PNG throughout the two-week operation.

Commanding Officer of HMAS Wollongong Lieutenant Commander Sean Dalton stated,“His crew was proud to accomplice with their PNGDF counterparts on the operation.Having two senior sailors from the PNGDF embarked for our patrols has drastically enhanced Wollongong’s surveillance functionality all through this patrol. Their native information assisted Wollongong in figuring out behaviour that lies exterior of regular patterns within the PNG Unique Financial Zone. Their expertise right here will likely be extremely beneficial of their coaching of the longer term crews of the PNGDF’s Guardian-class Patrol Boats.”


Petty Officer Mark Kaiguguia of the Papua New Guinea Defence Drive work along with HMAS Wollongong’s boatswain division throughout coaching drills on the Ship’s Inflexible Hull Inflatable Boat throughout Operation Solania. (Photograph by LSCIS Mark Welsh/Australian Authorities Division of Defence)

Commander of the ADF’s Deployable Joint Drive Headquarters Main Basic Jake Ellwood stated,“The operation was a significant multi-national effort. Defending fisheries is important for the livelihoods, employment and financial prosperity of our Pacific neighbours, and we’re proud to be working alongside the FFA, our Pacific Companions and members of the Quadrilateral Defence Coordination Group to assist safe and shield this very important useful resource. Collectively we’re tackling shared maritime safety challenges, together with transnational crime, border safety and unlawful fishing. Maritime safety is vital for all of us and we stay dedicated to working with our Pacific companions to keep up a safe, affluent and secure area.”

Operation Solania is the ADF’s contribution to maritime surveillance inside the Pacific area and helps the FFA’s annual operations KuruKuru, Island Chief, Tui Moana and Rai Balang to detect and deter unlawful, unregulated and unreported fishing exercise. Operation KuruKuru is the FFA’s largest annual maritime surveillance operation masking round 21.3 million sq. kilometres of the 15 Pacific Island member states’ unique financial zones. Throughout Operation KuruKuru, HMAS Wollongong sailed roughly 5600 kilometres, patrolling the excessive seas and PNG’s Exclusion Financial Zone with two PNGDF sailors on board. The deployment of the PNGDF sailors additionally provided them the chance to watch and take part in Wollongong’s coaching program. The PNGDF obtained its third Guardian-class Patrol Boat, HMPNGS Francis Agwi, in late October.