The Philippine Army (PA) signed a trilateral Terms of Reference (TOR) with the Philippine Marine Corps (PMC) and the Japanese Ground Self-Defense Force (JGSDF) in Tokyo, Japan on July 27, 2022.
Commanding General, Philippine Army Lt. Gen. Romeo S. Brawner, Jr., and Brig. Gen. Raul Jesus L. Caldez, Philippine Marine Corps Acting Commandant, signed the trilateral TOR with JGSDF Chief of Staff Gen. Yoshida Yoshihide during the 6th iteration of the PA-PMC-JGSDF “Strategic Guidance on Cooperation.”
The trilateral TOR lays the groundwork for future engagements among PA, PMC, and JGSDF, which includes Japan’s Marine Unit. The TOR aims to enhance defense cooperation between the two countries and strengthen cooperation against emerging threats in new domains, among others. It can be recalled that the PA and the JGSDF signed an earlier TOR more than seven years ago in Tokyo, Japan.
The JGDSF is one of the key partners of PA in beefing up its disaster-response capabilities. Parliamentary Vice Minister of Defense of Japan Vice Minister Tsuyohito Iwamoto reaffirmed the Japanese government’s commitment to helping beef up the Philippine Army’s disaster response capabilities during his visit to the 525th Engineer Combat “Mandirigtas” Battalion’s headquarters in Fort Bonifacio, Metro Manila on July 18, 2022.
The visit and equipment inspection came nine months after the Japanese government donated P51 million worth of water search and rescue, collapsed structure search and rescue, and crushed vehicle extrication and rescue equipment to PA. The PA and JGSDF also conduct regular Subject Matter Expert Exchanges in a spectrum of military operations. — PA