Piracy Threat Update - January 2015

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The IMB reports that incidents of piracy fell worldwide with a particularly noticeable drop in the number of attacks off the coast of Somalia (245 incidents were recorded worldwide). It is noteworthy that although there were 11 attempted attacks off the coast of Somalia none were successful.

ASSESSMENT.  This is LIKELY to reinforce the perception amongst criminal elements in Somalia that there are currently more lucrative illegal activities to pursue than piracy which will PROBABLY see a decrease in the number of attempted attacks in 2015, although even 1 successful hijacking is LIKELY to reinvigorate interest in piracy as a ‘business model’.

Southeast Asia

Despite the overall drop in piracy in 2014, the IMB has reported an increase in the number of global hijacking from 13 in 2013 to 21 in 2014 which reflects the increase in the number of tanker hijackings in Southeast Asia, with particular pirate activity reported around Pulau Bintan and the South China Sea.

ASSESSMENT.  The successful hijackings recorded in the region in 2014 will LIKELY continue into 2015 with increased activity as criminal elements successfully carry out the theft of gas and oil cargos for which there is a readily available black market. Increased likelihood of responses from regional security will PROBABLY also result in the use of increasingly violent tactics against the crew to ensure detection is avoided.

Incident reporting sourced from IMB Piracy Reporting Centre  (http://www.icc-ccs.org/piracy-reporting-centre/live-piracy-map/details/144/738)

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