Minister in the Prime Minister's Office, Second Minister for Finance and Education Ms Indranee Rajah officiated at the commissioning ceremony of the Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN)'s Littoral Mission Vessels (LMVs) RSS Justice and RSS Indomitable, as well as the opening of the LMV Simulation Centre RSS Daring at Tuas Naval Base this morning. The commissioning of RSS Justice and RSS Indomitable marks a significant milestone in the RSN's continued transformation to strengthen its capabilities, as the two LMVs join the rest of the Navy to safeguard Singapore's waters, protect its Sea Lines of Communication (SLOC) and contribute to regional peace and security. Additionally, the newly opened simulation centre will enable the LMV crew to train efficiently and effectively in realistic conditions.
Speaking at the commissioning ceremony, Ms Rajah highlighted how Singapore's security and success are inextricably linked to the sea due to our reliance on freedom of maritime access and trade for economic prosperity. In emphasising the critical role that the RSN plays in keeping Singapore's waters secure and accessible for the nation's survival, she said, "The RSN secures our SLOC, safeguards our continued free access to the sea, and protects our way of life… With today's commissioning, RSS Justice and RSS Indomitable will officially join the active service of the RSN. Justice and indomitability are two attributes that drive the RSN in its mission to secure our SLOC. Both also guide the RSN as it strives to ensure that Singapore continues to enjoy fair economic relations with our international trading partners and that the RSN will always rise to the occasion with an indomitable spirit, ready to respond to potential seaborne threats when called upon."Ms Indranee added that LMVs are built and easily configured with an innovative and user-friendly design to suit a variety of mission demands to fulfil the RSN's role. She added, "In addition to its traditional role in coastal security, and maritime patrol and surveillance missions, the RSN also plays an important role in humanitarian assistance and disaster relief as well as Search-and-Rescue missions."
Jointly developed by the RSN and Defence Science Technology Agency (DSTA), the integrated simulation centre for the LMV leverages on technology to integrate training on navigation, technical skills and combat to aid the crew's learning and to maintain the RSN's military edge. By emulating real-life operating environment and conditions of the LMV in a full mock-up of the LMV Integrated Command Centre, the simulation centre provides the ship's crew with realistic, efficient and effective training that shortens total training time required for each ship by as much as 60%.
Designed and built locally, the Independence-class LMVs are jointly developed by the RSN and DSTA, and equipped with smarter technology and sharper capabilities to enable the RSN to operate more efficiently and effectively. It pushes the boundaries of engineering and design in delivering a more capable, faster and mission-flexible ship with better seakeeping and endurance that can be manned with a leaner crew to replace the Fearless-class Patrol Vessels. The network-centric ships possess advanced radars and sensors, as well as a 360 degree out-the-window view and improved sense-making systems to enhance situational awareness and accelerate decision-making.
The first three LMVs – RSS Independence, RSS Sovereignty and RSS Unity, have been put to test since their commissioning last year, participating in various exercises with foreign counterparts in the region, including the inaugural ASEAN Multilateral Naval Exercise in Thailand last year as well as bilateral exercises with Thailand and Indonesia this year. The remaining three LMVs are expected to be operational by 2020.
Also present at the ceremony were Chief of Navy Rear-Admiral Lew Chuen Hong, and senior officials from the Ministry of Defence and the Singapore Armed Forces.