Asia Defense

Japan Coast Guard Vessel Visits Vietnam Port

Visit is first since the two sides signed a coast guard pact last year.

Japan Coast Guard Vessel Visits Vietnam Port
Credit: U.S. Navy Photo

On Monday, a Japanese Coast Guard vessel arrived at a seaport in the Vietnamese city of Da Nang as part of a four-day visit.

The Japan Coast Guard training vessel Kojima, carrying 91 crew members and trainees, docked at Tien Sa Seaport in Da Nang on Monday morning. Its visit there is scheduled to last until July 29.

During the visit, the ship commanders are paying courtesy calls on leaders of the Da Nang People’s Committee, the Vietnam Coast Guard Command, and the Command of Vietnam Coast Guard’s region 2. In addition, the ship crew will visit Vietnam’s Regional Maritime Search and Rescue Coordination Center No. 1 and play a friendly volleyball match with Vietnam Coast Guard’s region 2.

This is the fourth time a Japan Coast Guard ship has paid a visit to Vietnam and the second time Kojima has visited the country. It is also the first such interaction that has taken place since the two countries signed a new memorandum of cooperation (MoU) between their coast guards last September, when the general secretary of the Communist Party of Vietnam, Nguyen Phu Trong, visited Japan and met with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

Japan continues to play an important role in boosting Vietnam’s maritime safety and law enforcement capabilities. In an August 2014 visit to Hanoi, Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida pledged to donate six used patrol vessels to Vietnam (See: “Japan Gifts Patrol Vietnam Patrol Vessel Amid South China Sea Tensions”). Last year, Japan also pledged to grant 200 billion yen ($1.9 billion) in non-refundable aid to Vietnam to maintain its maritime safety for fiscal year 2015.

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Kojima, which is captained by Colonel Nanaura Hiroyuki, is 115 meters long and weighs 3,000 metric tons. It can travel at a maximum velocity of up to 18 nautical miles per hour.