Maritime security

The rise of maritime insecurity in many areas of the geostrategic importance has put the spot light back on the maritime domain as a critical conduit of trade and development. Regional and international cooperation have been stepped up to address threats. The security crisis off the Horn of Africa and along the Somalia coast resulted in the implementation of multilateral anti-piracy operations with positive results in curbing piracy.

However in the Gulf of Guinea (chart here) insecurity remains a concern and risks compromising the economic development of the region. Though cooperation has been upped between key stakeholders much remains to be done to address insecurity at sea and its root causes on land. In its 2014 report the organisation Ocean Beyond Piracy estimated the total economic cost of piracy at $983 million – read the full report here.

AU conferenceMindful of the potential of the sea, the African Union adopted in 2014 its first maritime security strategy – Africa’s Integrated Maritime Security or AIMS 2050. Next year the first African Union Extraordinary Summit on Maritime Security and Safety and Development in Africa will be organised in Lomé, Togo.

We hope that by bringing academic and practitioners together the WAPSN maritime security cluster will help foster dialogue and produce policy-relevant research addressing the complex maritime security conundrum in the Gulf of Guinea.

For more information please contact the cluster coordinator: