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US transfers six Metal Shark patrol boats to Vietnam

Released at: 17:15, 29/03/2018

US transfers six Metal Shark patrol boats to Vietnam

Photo: The US Embassy

Handover made during Vietnam visit by US Coast Guard Commander.

by My Van

The first visit by Vice Admiral Fred M. Midgette to Vietnam coincided with the official handover of the Coast Guard Region 4 Station from the US to Vietnam, according to an announcement from Embassy of the US in Vietnam on March 29. The official transfer of Region 4 Station on Phu Quoc Island, off the coast of the Mekong Delta, is another significant milestone in the bolstering of the partnership between Vietnam and the US  and demonstrates US support for a strong, prosperous, and independent Vietnam that contributes to international security and the rule of law.

The transfer comprises $20 million worth of infrastructure and equipment, including a training center, a maintenance facility, a boat lift, vehicles, a navigation simulator, and six brand-new fast-response Metal Shark boats capable of reaching up to 50 knots.

The bilateral partnership between Vietnam and the US continues to reach new heights, with back-to-back US presidential visits to Vietnam by President Barack Obama in 2016 and President Donald Trump in 2017, as well as a visit by the Secretary of Defense James Mattis in January, the historic visit by the US Navy aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson at the beginning of March, and now the inaugural visit by Vice Admiral Midgette, commander of all US Coast Guard missions within half of the globe, from the waterways within the Rocky Mountains in North America to the waters off the east coast of Africa.

“This fall, we plan to break ground on the Region 3 facility in Vung Tau,” said US Ambassador to Vietnam H.E. Dan Kritenbrink, which he hailed as “a truly exciting moment” in the US–Vietnam partnership.

Current regional and global challenges include smuggling, illicit trafficking, piracy and armed robbery on the high seas, illegal, unregulated and unreported fishing, and environmental degradation. The Region 4 Metal Shark boats will serve to deter bad actors from committing crimes against or near Vietnam.

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