Towards fostering friendly relations with its maritime neighbours, the Indian Navy hosted ‘GMS-21’ under the aegis of Naval War College, Goa on 11 and 12 May 21. Owing to the COVID-19 pandemic, the event for the first time was hosted in virtual mode, with online participation of Naval representatives from 13 Indian Ocean Littoral countries, which included India, Bangladesh, Comoros, Indonesia, Madagascar, Malaysia, Maldives, Mauritius, Myanmar, Seychelles, Singapore, Sri Lanka and Thailand. The theme for GMS-21 was focused on “Maritime Security and Emerging Non-Traditional Threats: A Case for Proactive Role for IOR Navies,” with emphasis on capacity building amongst the IOR Navies to tackle emerging common maritime threats.
With the Indian Ocean becoming the locus of the 21st-century strategic landscape, the symposium will play a constructive role in bringing together the stakeholders who have a role in evolving strategies, policies and implementation mechanisms on the issues of common interest in the maritime domain. In addition to presenting cooperative strategies for enhancing interoperability among partner maritime agencies, the event provided a forum for the articulation of views on the crucial maritime issues, followed by theme-based discussions.
Commodore Nitin Kapoor, Deputy Commandant Naval War College welcomed the member participants through a welcome address post which the symposium was formally inaugurated by Rear Admiral Sai Venkat Raman, VSM, Commandant Naval War College, who also delivered the keynote address. Commodore Shantanu Jha, Commodore (Foreign Cooperation), in his closing address, thanked all member countries for their valuable contribution during the Goa Maritime Symposium-21.