OBP launches piracy report 2016 – CGPCS chair gives keynote

The U.S. non-governmental organization and advocacy group Oceans Beyond Piracy (OBP) has launched its 2016 State of Maritime Piracy report at an event in the United Kingdom Chamber of Shipping, London. The report discusses counter-piracy trends and evolving threats in the Western Indian Ocean, global developments involving kidnap for ransom models of piracy, the human cost of maritime piracy in South Asia, the Caribbean, and South America and emerging trends in maritime crime in the Horn of Africa. It is available for download at the OBP website.

As part of the launch event Barry Faure, Chair of the CGPCS gave a keynote talk. In his comment, he highlighted the importance of securing the legacy of the counter-piracy work conducted by the international community and the need to further support the efforts of the region to provide maritime security. The full transcript of the talk is available here. 

Strategic Review of Trust Fund published

The Trust Fund to Support Initiatives of States Countering Piracy off the Coast of Somalia operating since 2010 under the auspices of the UN has been one of the major vehicles to fund counter-piracy projects. The trust fund was created to help defray the expenses associated with prosecution of suspected pirates, as well as other activities related to implementing the Contact Group’s objectives regarding combating piracy in all its aspects.

In 2016 the trust fund commissioned a strategic review, the results of which are now publicly available. The review provides an in-depth investigation of the causes of and responses to Somali-based piracy and a detailed discussion of the added value of the trust fund. The review authored by Peter Bauman and Sarah Hanssen of Bauman Global LLC is available here.

2017 CGPCS theme: Leaving a Lasting Legacy for the Region

In a new communication to the CGPCS participants, the new CGPCS chairperson, Ambassador Barry Faure, Secretary of State of the Department of Foreign Affairs of the Seychelles, announced the master message for the year: “Leaving a Lasting Legacy for the Region”.

The Ambassador also thanked all CGPCS participants for their ongoing commitment and announced that the next plenary is to be held in May/June this year.

The full communication is available here

Documentation of RCBWG meeting available

In November 2016 the first meeting of the newly formed Regional Capacity Building Working Group was held in Dar Es Salaam. The primary focus of the group is to coordinate capacity building work in the region. It continues the regional work of the former CGPCS capacity building working group. the RCBWG is chaired by the Indian Ocean Commission and the Government of Kenya.

At the November meeting the terms of reference of the new group were discussed. A core agenda item were presentations of the national priorities of regional states, how coordination can be improved through a new RCBWG website. The minutes of the meeting and the summarizing document are available. The next meeting of the group will be held in the margins of the CGPCS plenary.

Djibouti Code of Conduct widens focus beyond piracy

At a recent meeting of the Djibouti Code of Conduct states (DCoC) it was decided to broaden the focus of the agreement on other maritime crimes than piracy. The DCoC is a cooperation of states that have agreed to share information and support each other through joint training and capacity building projects. Initiated in 2009, the DCoC has led to the installment of three information sharing centers based in Sana’a (Yemen), Mombasa (Kenya), Dar es Salam (Tanzania), and a regional training center based in Djibouti. The DCoC is supported through the International Maritime Organization as well as the EU funded project CRIMARIO. Further information on the amendment to the DCoC is available here. An analysis of the importance of the DCoC from 2012 available here. 

CGPCS welcomes new chairperson

With the new year, the CGPCS welcomes a new chairperson. With recent changes at government level in the Republic of Seychelles, Ambassador Barry Faure, the Secretary of State of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs will assume the chair of the CGPCS. He follows up on Minister Joël Morgan who chaired the CGPCS in 2016.  The CGPCS Secretariat will continue to be led by Mr. Raymond St. Ange as Head and Mr. Jaques Belle as Deputy Head.  Read the full message of the outgoing and incoming chair here.