Worrying Rise in Coastal Sea Hijackings

Globally, 116 incidents of piracy and armed robbery against ships were reported to the Piracy Reporting Center of the International Chamber of Commerce International Maritime Bureau (IMB). The center raised concerns over a worrying trend of small tanker hijacks during the first half of 2014.

In Southeast Asia, reports indicate at least six coastal tankers were hijacked for their cargoes of diesel or gas oil, sparking fears of a new trend in pirate attacks. Before these hijackings, the majority of attacks in the region had been aboard mainly anchored vessels boarded for petty theft.

“The recent increase in the number of successful hijackings is a cause for concern,” stated IMB Director Pottengal Mukundan. “These serious attacks have so far targeted small coastal tankers. We advise these vessels to maintain strict anti-piracy measures in these waters, and to report all attacks and suspicious approaches by small craft.”

In 2014, 10 vessels have been hijacked, seven fired upon and 78 boarded. Two hundred crewmembers were taken hostage, five were kidnapped and two were killed, according to the IMB report.

Read more on the ICC website.

Staff contact: Kristin Isabelli

More on USCIB’s Customs and Trade Facilitation Committee

Staff Contact:   Megan Giblin

Director, Customs and Trade Facilitation
Tel: 202.371.9235

Megan Giblin manages USCIB’s work on customs policy, and provides support on trade and investment policy, handling issue management, policy development, and staff support for USCIB committees and working groups. Additionally, she serves as an International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) representative to the World Customs Organization’s Harmonized Systems Committee.
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