Combined Maritime Forces

New Zealand’s economic prosperity depends upon open sea, air and electronic lines of communication. The New Zealand Defence Force makes an important contribution to international efforts towards freedom of navigation. This includes participation in multinational counter-piracy and maritime security operations in the Arabian Gulf and Indian Ocean.

New Zealand provides two staff officers to the Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) Headquarters in Bahrain. The CMF is a multinational naval partnership, which exists to promote security, stability and prosperity across approximately 3.2 million square miles of international waters, encompassing some of the world’s most important shipping lanes. The CMF’s main focus areas are defeating terrorism, preventing piracy, encouraging regional cooperation, promoting a safe maritime environment and preventing drug and people trafficking.

The mandate for this deployment expires in June 2020.

In September 2019, Cabinet approved the deployment of five additional NZDF personnel to the Command Team of the CMF Combined Task Force 150. They will be based at the CMF Headquarters for four months between December 2019 and March 2020.