The Australian Navy warship, HMAS Ballarat, is paying a goodwill visit to Vietnam from 4 to 8 June 2017. The port visit is expected to strengthen the relationship between the two navies and to enhance the nation to nation ties between Australia and Vietnam.
The guided missile frigate HMAS Ballarat arrived in Da Nang today with a crew of 29 officers and 159 sailors. The Commander and crew will meet with officers and sailors from the Vietnamese People’s Navy to engage in a range of goodwill activities and to conduct a professional exchange on ship operations.
The crew will also participate in a friendly sporting activity with the personnel of Brigade 172 of the Vietnamese People’s Navy as well as taking advantage of the opportunity to explore Vietnam’s rich culture and to meet the people of Vietnam.
Present at the reception, Colonel Nerolie McDonald, Australian Defence Attaché in Vietnam, stated “This visit is an excellent opportunity to build upon the Australia-Vietnam defence cooperation relationship that commenced in 1999 and has grown in size and complexity since that time. Since 1999, the Australian Defence Force has trained over 1,500 Vietnam People’s Army officers in Vietnam and Australia and is now assisting the Vietnam People’s Army to prepare for United Nations peacekeeping operations. I know that the officers and crew of HMAS Ballarat are looking forward to their visit to Da Nang as one of the highlights of their deployment.”
HMAS Ballarat is commanded by Commander David Landon, CSM, Royal Australian Navy (RAN). HMAS Ballarat is an ANZAC Class guided missile frigate with roles including air defence, anti-submarine and surface warfare, surveillance, interdiction and reconnaissance.
Weighing 3,600 tons and 118 metres in length, HMAS Ballarat is armed with Evolved Sea Sparrow surface-to-air missiles, Harpoon Block 2 Anti-ship missiles, a Mk 45 127 millimetre gun and six Mk 32 torpedo tubes. HMAS Ballarat is also fitted with a flight deck and a hangar for a multi-role S-70B-2 Sea Hawk helicopter and has a top speed of 27 knots.
HMAS Ballarat is the 23rd Royal Australian Navy (RAN) warship making a goodwill visit to Vietnam since bilateral defence relations were established.
By Linh Bui