BIMCO, ICS, INTERTANKO and INTERCARGO have jointly released an updated version of ‘Guidelines for Owners, Operators and Masters for Protection Against Piracy in the Gulf of Guinea Region.’ This document now supersedes the previous guidance for the region.
The guidance is to be read in conjunction with the 4th edition of the Best Management Practices for Protection against Somalia Based Piracy as amended (BMP4)
Piracy and armed robbery in the waters off West Africa has become an established criminal activity of very serious concern to the maritime sector. Incidents have recently occurred as far south as Angola and as far north as Sierra Leone. These attacks have become increasingly violent, often involving firearms, and cases of kidnapping for ransom have also become more common. The global shipping industry has therefore acted in concert to update its existing Guidelines to take account of what has become a totally unacceptable security situation.
Although the nature of the attacks against shipping in West Africa differs from that of Somalia-based piracy, the basic principles of the Best Management Practices, previously developed by the industry to help protect against piracy in the Indian Ocean, are also applicable. The Guidelines should therefore be read in conjunction with BMP4.
There are significant changes to the reporting mechanism for vessels operating in the Gulf of Guinea area, with the closure of the MTISC-GoG and the opening of the Marine Domain Awareness for Trade – Gulf of Guinea service (MDAT-GoG). The revised industry Guidelines can be downloaded from the link above and free of charge from the websites of BIMCO, ICS, INTERCARGO AND INTERTANKO.
More information is available on the Club's dedicated Maritime Security & Piracy resource page. This section collates additional information and resources, loss prevention advisories and useful external web links.