As economies across the globe continue to contract, navies, armies, and air forces are being told, if not, “do more with less” to at least “do the same with less.” Proceedings thus asked sea-service commanders around the world: What innovative efficiencies and economies are you implementing, or considering implementing, to improve force readiness?
Vice Admiral Edwin Dominici Rosario
As an island state in the Caribbean, the Dominican Republic has leverage conditions allowing full use of the sea from different perspectives. However, its location makes it vulnerable to threats by sea, such as illicit trafficking in all its forms—narcotics, people, and weapons—as well as terrorism and the potential risk of disasters posed by the trajectories of tropical cyclones.
Being a small naval service, the Dominican Navy not only fulfills the role of national defense, but in turn is the institution responsible for law enforcement at sea, duties that in many countries are performed by a coast guard or naval prefectures.
For the increment of the operational readiness of its naval forces, the Dominican Navy has a concept of operations that includes maintaining naval and marine units trained, certified, and capable of national defense; the permanent establishment of a Maritime Interdiction Task Force to neutralize illicit maritime traffic from or into to our territory; and the ability to form a naval task group to mitigate natural disasters.
As main measures to be implemented by the Dominican Navy, to raise levels of operational readiness of the force we have:
• Improved and redefined the models for service education and naval training/certification with a focus on operational excellence. This includes upgrades to the capabilities and infrastructure of the Training Center of the Fleet and the Marine Training School.
• Revised the tactics, techniques, and procedures applicable to maritime interdiction operations.
• Increased cooperation in the areas of operations and intelligence with other Dominican institutions as well as partner nations.
• Formed special-operations tactical teams of marines for quick reaction in coastal locations.
• Implemented a mid- and long-term project to install coastal sensors (radars, cameras, and air intelligence) that will allow us better maritime domain awareness, as well as improvement in our command-and-control systems. We also plan in the coming decade to replace 12 surface patrol units of different sizes that are nearing the end of their operational lives.
These measures will provide a substantial improvement to the operational readiness that will reflect a versatile navy, organized, equipped and trained, and able to secure the maritime interests of the Dominican state, while cooperating with the maritime security of the Caribbean region.