CARAT Joint Naval Exercise – held by Bangladesh and US.

The Navies of Bangladesh and United States held a joint Naval Exercise called CARAT on November 4, 2020. CARAT is the abbreviation for the Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training. The bilateral exercise was held at Chittagong, Bangladesh.

Highlights

The CARAT exercise historically involves the people-to-people interactions, several professional exchanges, community relations project, Subject Matter Expert exchanges and various social events. But, this year, certain events will be held virtually amid the COVID-19. The virtual events include Maritime Domain Awareness, Replenishment at Sea training, legal regulations at sea and aviation best practices of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs). This year, the exercise is being supported by United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the Bali Process Regional Support Office for the very first time. The CARAT exercise held in Bangladesh was the second exercise this year. Earlier, CARAT-Brunei was held in South China sea between October 5 to October 9, 2020.

Role of UNODC

The United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime ( UNODC)  will provide education on technical assistance to combat maritime crime and smuggling of migrants to the navies.

CARAT Exercise

The Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (CARAT) is a series of annual bilateral naval exercise. It is conducted by the US Pacific fleet with countries including Bangladesh, Cambodia, Indonesia, Brunei, Philippines, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Singapore. The Primary focus of the exercise is on the ASEAN members. However, it also held exercises with non-ASEAN members like Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. The CARAT exercise is held with objectives of  enhancing regional cooperation, building friendships and strengthening the professional skills.