$16B Piracy Issue on Maritime Agenda

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Money and Ships conference to review current situation after global attacks hit all-time high of 266 for the first half of 2011- problem costs industry up to $16 billion annually. Global attacks on ships rose to an all-time high of 266, during the first six months of 2011 up from 196 in 2010 according to the International Maritime Bureau (IMB). More than 117 ships were attacked and 20 seized, by pirates off the coast of Somalia alone since January 1, 2011, holding 28 ships and 518 hostages for ransom as of the end of April 2011. 
These issues are to be raised and reviewed by industry experts at Middle East Money and Ships conference, which takes place at the Address Hotel in Dubai Marina on 16 October 2011. According to a report last year by the Council on Foreign Relations, there is no quantitative research available on the total cost of global piracy. Estimates vary widely because of disagreement over whether insurance premiums, freight rates, and the cost of reroutings should be included with, for instance, the cost of ransoms. Some analysts suggest the cost is close to $1 billion a year, while others claim losses could be as high as $16 billion.
According to IMB’s Piracy Reporting Center, in 2008, 47 of the 49 successful hijackings globally occurred off the coast of Somalia, although violent attacks against crew members were far more prevalent off the coast of Nigeria than anywhere else in the world. In 2009 hijackings off Somalia increased to 49 despite fewer ships and a increased naval military presence, while incidents elsewhere in the world including Indonesia actually declined. 
The conference programme is split into four sessions, starting with a ship owners’ panel, debating the expansion of the Middle Eastern fleet and a financiers’ panel which will discuss the challenges convincing the finance sector to invest in shipping. In the afternoon, additional sessions dedicated to trading patterns and infrastructure development and regulatory, technical and of course marine insurance issues will be addressed. 
A line-up of top industry professionals will be speaking this year including; Shri Sabyasachi Hajara, Chairman & Managing Director, The Shipping Corporation of India Ltd; Sean Bond, Director Environmental Solutions ABS; Jorn Hinge, President & CEO, United Arab Shipping Company; Marcus Machin, Director, Tufton Oceanic (Middle East) Ltd and Ahmed Hareb Al Falahi, CEO Gulf Energy Maritime.

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