- Piracy in the Gulf of Guinea is negatively affecting the economic potential of the sea for countries in this region.
- In the past 12 months no less than 40 ships were attacked.
- Inspired by UNs’ Security Council Resolution, the 2013 Yaoundé Code of Conduct strives to strengthen maritime security in the Gulf of Guinea.
- Yet, the actual security situation remains low due to other security challenges generating a high demand for law enforcement resources.
BIMCO says that piracy in the Gulf of Guinea is an unacceptable burden to seafarers and shipping companies and the superpowers such as the US, EU, and China should take note of this and make a plan to counter piracy, says an article published in the Steel Guru.
The Losses Incurred
Around 40 ships have been attacked in the Gulf of Guinea in the past 12 months. Most recently, six seafarers were kidnapped from the MSC Mandy, which was on the way to Lagos, Nigeria. BIMCO asks, on behalf of its members, that maritime powers increase their presence and expand their collaboration with local states to curb piracy.
The Call for Help
Jakob P. Larsen, BIMCO Head of Maritime Security, said “We look towards the EU, China and the United States to join forces and deploy naval capacity in the Gulf of Guinea to end this constant threat to seafarers. BIMCO remains very thankful to the regional navies who are working tirelessly and with great sacrifice to secure their seas. While these efforts command our deepest respect, pirates in the Gulf of Guinea can still operate largely unchecked in the open seas, outside of the territorial waters, and on occasion even strike inside territorial waters.”
Steps to Eradicate Piracy
In the 2013 Yaoundé Code of Conduct, states in the Gulf of Guinea recognized that piracy constituted an issue and launched several schemes to strengthen maritime security. The Yaoundé Code of Conduct was inspired by the United Nations’ Security Council Resolution 2018 (2011) and 2039 (2012) and contains several initiatives to strengthen maritime security in the Gulf of Guinea.
Several capacity building initiatives have been started in the region since the Yaoundé Code of Conduct was agreed, but the actual security situation in the Gulf of Guinea is still not good. One of the reasons is that other security challenges in the region, such as land-based terrorist threats, generate a high demand for law enforcement resources.
In addition to the strain put on seafarers, the current situation negatively impacts the economic potential of the sea of the countries in the region.
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Source: The Steel Guru