Expansion of Malabar Exercise

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    • The expansion of the Malabar naval exercise in the future is a possibility as Chief of US Naval Operations Admiral.

    Second Phase of Malabar Exercises

    • Phase­ I of Malabar was held in August and hosted by the U.S. Navy near Guam. 
    • Phase ­II is being held between 12 to 15 October in the Bay of Bengal.
      • Phase­II would build upon the synergy, coordination and interoperability developed during Phase­I of the exercise.
      • It would also focus on advanced surface and anti-submarine warfare exercises, seamanship evolutions and weapon firings. 
    • The 25th edition of Malabar, being conducted in 2 phases while observing all protocols during the pandemic.
    • It is reflective of the commitment of the participating countries to support a free, open, inclusive Indo­Pacific as well as a rules ­based international order.

    Aim of the Malabar Exercise

    • Inter-operable Airfields, Ports and Refuelling Capabilities
      • These exercises will help in materialising the agreements regarding communications and logistics.
      • They will make the two sides more inter­ operable.

    Logistics and Communication Military Cooperation Agreements with USA

    • India has signed all four foundational agreements with the USA.
      • General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA)
        • It was signed a long time ago.
        • Recently, an extension to it, the Industrial Security Annex (ISA), was signed in 2019.
      • Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA) in 2016, 
      • Communications Compatibility and Security Agreement (COMCASA) in 2018 
      • Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement for Geo­Spatial cooperation (BECA) in 2020.

    Plans of Future Expansion

    • Cyber Warfare:
      • Cyber would be among an area that is being discussed to be refined in terms of working together as well as high ­end operations.
      • It may be deployed in the air, on the sea and under the sea.
    • Inclusion of UK:
      • After the AUKUS Pact, UK may also be invited to join the Malabar.
      • Although any decision on it will have to be taken by the four Quad member countries.

    For more details on QUAD, please refer to the link.

    Source: TH