Canadian warship makes first visit to Cam Ranh, Vietnam
By Lieutenant (Navy) Vince Charlebois
When Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship (HMCS) Regina and Naval Replenishment Unit (NRU) Asterix came alongside in Cam Ranh Bay, Vietnam on June 10, it was the first time a Canadian warship had conducted a port visit there.
Regina is currently deployed on Operation PROJECTION-Asia Pacific, conducting forward naval presence operations in the region, as well as conducting cooperative deployments and participating in international naval exercises with partner nations.
Port visits such as these aid in building relationships with partners in the Asia-Pacific region.
Regina’s command team made calls to military and government officials, and the ship’s company participated in community outreach activities in the local area.
During the visit, members of the ship’s company went to the University of Khanh Hoa to discuss the role of women in the Canadian Armed Forces and to exchange stories and cultural experiences such as music and dancing. These experiences highlighted values shared between Canada and Vietnam.
Regina’s crew members also played volleyball with Vietnamese military personnel and visited the Nhân Ai Shelter for Children and a social welfare centre, where the commanding officer, along with Canadian Ambassador Deborah Paul, presented $10,000 from Boomer’s Legacy to help replace a damaged road. Later, Regina and the Ambassador hosted a reception on the ship’s flight deck for local dignitaries and military officials.
Regina’s visit, as part of key engagements on behalf of Canada, aided in highlighting the growing bilateral relations with Vietnam, both in diplomatic and defence objectives.