October 4, 2019 – The Goa Maritime Conclave (GMC)-2019 was inaugurated by the National Security Advisor, Shri Ajit Kumar Doval, at Goa on 4th October 2019. Inaugurating the conclave, which was conducted by the Naval War College, the NSA, during his key note address brought out that the Sea, Cyber, Space are areas which would pose both opportunities and challenges for the future and hoped that engagements during the GMC would help build up on the opportunities and overcome challenges. The 31st edition of the Naval War College Journal was also released by the NSA on the occasion.
The theme for the conclave is “Common Maritime Priorities in IOR and need for Regional Maritime Strategy”. The deliberations, which were held over three sessions during the day were focused on capacity building among IOR Navies to tackle emerging maritime threats, in addition to discussing cooperative strategies for enhancing interoperability among partner maritime agencies. Renowned national and international speakers articulated their views on these important issues, which were followed by theme based discussions.
The sub theme for the first session was “Opportunities and Challenges in IOR”, in which Admiral Sir George Zambellas (retd), former First Sea Lord of the Royal (UK) Navy, and Prof. Varun Sahni, Vice Chancellor of Goa University, were the speakers and the discussion was moderated by Admiral Arun Prakash, PVSM, AVSM, VrC, VSM (Retd), former Chief of the Naval Staff, IN. In the second session, Admiral (Dr) Jayanth Colombage (Retd.), former Commander of the Sri Lanka Navy and Shri Arun Singh (Retd), former Indian Ambassador to the US, spoke on the sub theme “Imperatives and Priorities for Forging a Common Agenda in the IOR”, which was moderated by Admiral Sunil Lanba, PVSM, AVSM, ADC (Retd) former Chief of the Naval Staff, IN. Lastly, in the third session, H.E. Mr Sidharto R Suryodipuro, Ambassador of Indonesia to India and Shri Prabhat Shukla (Retd), former Indian Ambassador to Russia, spoke on the sub theme “Regional Constructs and Strategies in the IOR”, which was moderated by Rear Admiral Sudarshan Shrikhande, AVSM (Retd).
On the side-lines of the conclave, various bilateral meetings were also held, between the Chiefs of Navies, to further build on the existing bonds of friendship and also discuss issues specific to both countries.
The event which was held at Hotel Taj Fort Aguada was hosted by Admiral Karambir Singh, PVSM, AVSM, ADC, the Chief of the Naval Staff and attended by Chiefs of Navies and senior representatives from 10 Indian Ocean littoral countries which included Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand from South East Asia, Bangladesh, Myanamar and Sri-Lanka from India’s immediate neighborhood and the islands of Seychelles, Maldives and Mauritius.