Bersama Gold 2021

Previous known as exercise Bersama Shield, this year's edition was renamed Bersama Gold (BG) to reflect the 50th anniversary of the Five Power Defence Arrangements (FPDA). The FPDA consists of the following countries; United Kingdom, Australia, Malaysia, New Zealand and Singapore (all Commonwealth members).

BG-2021, held from 8 to 16 October 2021, is basically a joint naval air training, which consists in integrating all naval and air units to fight together in complex scenarios. Within the FPDA, all five member nations agree to consult one another on measures taken separately or together in response to any attack or threat of attack to Malaysia or Singapore.

Under the FPDA a number of formalised and scheduled exercises have been held since it was set up in 1971 enhancing the defence and security cooperation and promoting free trade in this region.

The exercise area is in the South China Sea international waters between the coasts of Malaysia and Singapore. The various scenarios involved anti-air and anti-submarine exercises, gunnery firings and maneuvering drills.

Aircraft participating in the exercise were:

Bersama Gold 2021 exercise flypast 18oct21 320Royal Air Force (RAF)
F-35B Lightning II from 617sq operating from HMS Queen Elizabeth/Carrier Strike Group 21
Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF)
F/A-18F Super Hornet from 1sq and operating from Paya Lebar (Singapore)
P-8A Poseidon from 11sq
Tentera Udara Diraja Malaysia (TUDM, Royal Malaysian Air Force)
Su-30MKM from 11 Skuadron operating from Gong Kedak
Hawk Mk108/Mk208 from 15 Skuadron operating from Butterworth
Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF)
P-3K2 Orion from 5sq operating from Changi (Singapore)
SH-2G(I) Seasprite from 6sq
Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF)
F-15SG Strike Eagle from 142sq or 149sq operating from Paya Lebar
F-16C/D Fighting Falcon from 140sq or 143sq operating from Tengah
Fokker 50MPA from 121sq operating from Changi
G550 Nachshon Aitam from 111sq operating from Tengah
S-70B Seahawk from 123sq

On Monday 18 October the FPDA member nations marked the 50 years of the defence pact with a flypast and naval display in the waters off Marina South (Singapore). Not all types of aircraft participated in the flypast.

Photo by Hans Jacobs

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