The international shipping industry last week gave the UN Contact Group on Piracy off the Coast of Somalia an insight into industry-wide activity in support of deterring and defeating piracy off Somalia and in the wider Arabian Sea.  The presence of industry representatives at this meeting provided a significant opportunity for industry to work together with the UN in addressing the problem of piracy off the coast of Somalia which continues to endanger the safety, and even the lives, of the seafarers who keep these vital trade routes open.

The Round Table of International Shipping Associations (RTisa) attended the 7th Plenary Session of The Contact Group on Piracy off the Coast of Somalia, at the United Nations in New York, as NGOs in an advisory capacity, and was invited by the chair of Working Group 3 to make a statement in Plenary on the industry’s continued commitment to deterring and defeating piracy off the coast of Somalia.

In particular the industry brief focused on:

  • Its development, production and distribution of the latest (third) edition of the Best Management Practices document (BMP3)
  • The direct and indirect costs of operating continuously in a high-risk environment (willingly borne to safeguard crew, cargo and ship)  - including  implementation of BMP, crew training, passive protective measures, increased insurance and crew costs and provision of MNLOs to EUNAVFOR
  • Urging all Governments to robustly pursue the prosecution of those committing acts of piracy on the high seas
  • The need for better coordination of  independent national convoys which, however much they may be a useful and appreciated part of  the counter-piracy operation in the IRTC, are irregular and clearly uncoordinated
  • The need to provide industry associations with information on ships which are not following the reporting requirements of BMP3