NZ Navy Vessels Begin Visit to Vietnam in Sign of Friendship

On September 24, HMNZS Te Mana and HMNZS Aotearoa docked at Sai Gon Port, kicking off their official visit to Vietnam. This visit looks to strengthen the bonds of friendship between the Royal New Zealand Navy and the Navy of the Vietnam People.

0
267


Two auxiliary ships of the Royal New Zealand Navy – HMNZS Aotearoa and HMNZS Te Mana – arrived at Saigon Port in Ho Chi Minh City on September 24 as part of a goodwill visit to celebrate 48 years of diplomatic relations between Vietnam and New Zealand, according to a report by VOV.


The visit aims to further strengthen the friendly and close relationship between the Royal New Zealand Navy and the Vietnam People’s Navy.

Royal New Zealand Navy Begin Vietnam Goodwill Visit
Vietnamese and New Zealand officers at the welcome ceremony in HCM City on September 24 Source: New Zealand Embassy – Hanoi, Vietnam/FB


During their five-day stay, officers and sailors will participate in various activities, including exchanges and meetings between the two navies, friendly sports events, and community activities.

“We are very much looking forward to spending time in this beautiful city, seeing the wonderful sights, meeting the very friendly people, and enjoying the amazing food,” said Rear Admiral James Gilmour, Commander Joint Forces New Zealand.


All crew members of the two ships are excited to learn about Vietnamese culture and interact with the people, while also sharing New Zealand culture with their Vietnamese friends, according to Rear Admiral James Gilmour.

Royal New Zealand Navy Begin Vietnam Goodwill Visit
Vietnamese and New Zealand officers at the welcome ceremony in HCM City on September 24 Source: New Zealand Embassy – Hanoi, Vietnam/FB

Sailors of the Royal New Zealand Navy ships HMNZS Te Mana and HMNZS Aotearoa also performed Maori waiata (traditional songs) and haka (dance) to show appreciation for the warm welcome from HCM City and Vietnam People’s Navy.


The visit of the two ships follows the successful visit to New Zealand in July 2023 by Senior Lieutenant General Nguyen Tan Cuong, Chief of the General Staff and Deputy Minister of National Defense of Vietnam.


The two countries are expected to hold talks on defense cooperation in early 2024.


Over the past years, Vietnam and New Zealand have frequently shared information and promoted cooperation through annual defense strategy and defense policy dialogues, as well as multilateral frameworks such as the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting Plus.


During their stay in HCM City, the officers and sailors of New Zealand will participate in a number of activities, including meetings between the navies of both countries, sports exchanges, and community activities. They will also take part in a sand table exercise with the High Command of Vietnam’s Naval Region 2.

Hannah Nguyen