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News Around the Fleet

News | May 9, 2022

Pacific Indian Ocean Shipping Working Group Convenes in San Diego

By Commander, U.S. Third Fleet Public Affairs

Commander, U.S. 3rd Fleet hosted the Pacific Indian Ocean Shipping Working Group (PACIOSWG) at Naval Base Point Loma, May 2-5.

The annual forum enhances the interoperability of member nations across a range of naval cooperation and guidance for shipping (NCAGS) and maritime trade operations roles to bolster maritime security, protection of merchant shipping, and industry fidelity through maritime domain awareness.

Senior officers from the navies of Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, New Zealand, Republic of Korea, Singapore, the United Kingdom and the United States attended the working group.

“Your active participation, partnership, and leadership in this working group is critical to better understanding our operating environment,” said Vice Adm. Steve Koehler, commander of U.S. 3rd Fleet, during his opening remarks. “Through the exchange of information on your maritime industry security practices and current trends, the naval cooperation and guidance for shipping or maritime trade operations greatly enhances the interface between the naval forces and merchant shipping.”

The working group also served as a final planning conference for Bell Buoy 2022, an exercise that is designed to promote the practice of NCAGS processes and policies at tactical and operational levels. It simulates scenarios that incorporate new threats to which participants must respond.

“The exercise enables us to integrate partner capabilities and collaborate,” said Koehler. “No one country alone can manage this vast geographic area.”

The PACIOSWG was formed in 2002 following the events of Sept. 11, and is derived from the Radford Collins Treaty of 1951.

An integral part of U.S. Pacific Fleet, U.S. 3rd Fleet not only leads naval forces in the Indo-Pacific, but also provides the realistic, relevant training necessary to flawlessly execute our Navy’s role across the full spectrum of military operations—from combat operations to humanitarian assistance and disaster relief. U.S. 3rd Fleet works together with our allies and partners to advance freedom of navigation, the rule of law, and other principles that underpin security for the Indo-Pacific region.