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Survey: Pirates See Naval Presence as Biggest Deterrent
66 Somali inmates accused of piracy and imprisoned in Somaliland, Puntland and the Seychelles have identified international naval presence as the biggest deterrent against piracy, according to an informal survey carried out by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and Oceans Beyond Piracy.
The survey asked the prisoners to identify what their motivations for going to sea were, if they knew anyone that had left piracy, and what their plans were post-prison. The survey also asked their opinion on the most effective deterrent to piracy, and what might stop piracy long-term.
The survey found there is a clear economic basis for piracy, and long-term solutions to piracy may require addressing this.
One prisoner reported going to sea because ”My family is poor, so that’s why I joined the pirates.”
One reason for leaving piracy was that they had enough money to retire. Many prisoners also pointed to illegal fishing as a reason for piracy and suggested that if it persisted then piracy may continue.
Prisoners who knew pirates who quit piracy indicated that family and community pressures were very important consideration for people leaving piracy, and counter-piracy messaging encouraging this may be valuable. Additionally, a prisoner reported ”Prison is the worst place to be in the world,” with many prisoners also specifically citing fear of future prison time as a deterrent.
International naval presence was frequently reported as a concern or a significant contribution to deterring pirates. The same was true for armed guards aboard vessels, although to a lesser degree than international navies. This suggests that a significant draw-down in naval forces may reduce a deterrent factor potentially contributing to the reduction in piracy.
”This survey shows that international navies, family and social disapproval, and the deterrent effects of prison are all elements of suppressing piracy, while economic pressures and illegal fishing all push people towards piracy. This survey shows the need for a coordinated response rather than a one size fits all solution,” Conor Seyle the Director of Research at the One Earth Future Foundation, said.
Strict New Port Pollution Limits
An anti-pollution law under which all ocean-going vessels must be powered by low-sulphur fuel while berthing in Hong Kong took has come into effect accompanied by calls to look ahead to the next step – pressuring other regional ports to follow suit. The city now makes it compulsory for berthing ocean-bound vessels to use fuel with sulphur content no higher than 0.5 per cent, lower than the international cap of 3.5 per cent. In return, shipowners save half of their berthing fees through government subsidies. The move is expected to cut emissions of sulphur and respirable suspended particles of 10 microns or less by 12 per cent and 6 per cent, respectively.
Fears of Security Standards on Slide
With a pricing war underway since rates for private maritime security companies (PMSCs) have hit rock bottom many firms are cutting corners in a dangerous way, warns the co-founder of an independent security brokerage. Emma Mitchell of ASKET reports that market pricing for security services is at an all time low. Mitchell warns the cutthroat nature of the PMSC business means the industry may only just be paying enough to ensure it is compliant and credible. “Some security companies are employing sub-standard contractors or illegally sharing weapons to allow them to maintain margin,” Mitchell reports. Her company has rejected three PMSCs even with ISO28007.
Update: Alexander Spirit Crew Still at Devonport
The 36 crew members of the fuel tanker Alexander Spirit have resumed work operations following the decision of Australia’s Fair Work Commission (FWC), saying that the the five-day protest by the crew was not protected industrial action, but have not left Devonport.
According to Maritime Union of Australia’s (MUA) assistant secretary Paul Garrett “there hasn’t been any order to sail, the crew is standing by, they’re working as needed,” ABC News reports.
MUA has lodged an appeal to FWC’s decision which is scheduled to be heard on Friday.
Last week the workers aboard the Caltex-owned ship were told their upcoming voyage to Singapore would be their last as they had been replaced by a foreign crew.
Following the decision, the Australian workers refused to depart from Devonport until they got more information about their redundancy entitlements.
The ship’s operator Teekay Australia, asked for FMC’s intervention in the case, as MUA claimed that some of the crew members were under mental strain rendering them unfit for the journey.
Garrett added that workers were still pending answers on their long-term employment prospects.
Hundreds of unionists and supporters hit the streets of Devonport on Monday in solidarity with the 36 crew members of the fuel tanker and some of them remain protesting at the Devonport wharf, ABC News said.
World Maritime News Staff
Adani Group in advanced talks to take over L&T s Kattupalli terminal
To strengthen its presence in the east coast, the Adani Group is likely to take over the operational and management control of Larsen & Toubro (L&T) Kattupalli International Container Terminal near Chennai.
Multiple sources have told Business Standard that Adani, which is led by chairman and founder Gautam Adani, is in the final stage of getting into an arrangement with L&T to take over the terminal, which the Mumbai-based construction and engineering major built at a cost of Rs 4,000 crore.
Responding to a query, a L&T spokesperson said: “As a matter of policy, L&T neither confirms nor denies market speculation.” An Adani spokesperson said: “We would not like to comment on any market speculation.”
According to a source close to the Adani Group, “They (Adani Group) were looking at Gangavaram in Andhra Pradesh, Karaikkal (near Puducherry) and L&T’s Kattupalli (near Chennai). Gangavaram did not work out due to high valuation. Karaikkal has some other issues, though it is still under consideration. L&T is a safer bet for them.”
It may be noted that Adani recently got a nod to develop the Vizhinjam port in Kerala. Besides, last year, Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone had acquired Dhamra Port in Odisha from Tata Steel and L&T Infrastructure for an estimated Rs 5,500 crore. Adani Port is also developing a Rs 1,270-crore container terminal inside Ennore Port and the first phase is expected to be ready by January next year. The total capacity of the terminal would be 1.2 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs), of which 0.8 million TEUs will be ready in the first phase.
Sources said Adani might face hurdles to buy out the Kattupalli terminal because the Tamil Nadu government gave its concession on the condition L&T operates both Naval Yard and container terminal.
Kattupalli near Chennai caters to opportunities from East Coast (KG Basin) and South East Asia. The container terminal currently has two container berths and it handles 1,200 containers per month and got three regular services.
Shipping lines such as Maersk, Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM) and Nippon Yusen Kaisha Lines (NYKL) made trail calls successfully. NYKL has commenced regular weekly call at Kattupalli Port.
L&T Shipbuilding Limited is a Joint Venture between L&T and Tamilnadu Industrial Development and Corporation Limited (TIDCO) wherein L&T holds 97% and TIDCO holds 3% in the Company to develop shipyard cum minor port complex.
Both the shipyard and the port have SEZ status.
Source: Business Standard