ReCAAP Celebrates its Tenth Anniversary
On March 18, the Regional Cooperation Agreement on Combating Piracy and Armed Robbery Against Ships in Asia (ReCAAP) commemorated its 10th anniversary.
ReCAAP is a co-operation between Asian countries, but other countries such as Denmark, the United States, the Netherlands, Norway and Australia take part in knowledge-sharing and problem-solving. Also, ReCAAP has given inspiration for cooperation on combating piracy in Africa.
The cooperation on combating armed robbery against ships and their crews in Asia is of great importance. Recent five years have witnessed an increase in the number of armed robbery incidents in South-East Asia. Despite a number of less serious incidents, there have also been serious situations. In 2015, there were a total of 12 captures – 11 of which occurred on oil tankers in order to steal the oil.
In order to reduce the number of armed robbery incidents, ReCAAP has been striving to optimize the cooperation between the countries of South-East Asia. As a result, the number of incidents has been decreasing in the last six months, and no ships have been captured.
Over the year, ReCAAP has published a Regional Guide to Counter Piracy and Armed Robbery Against Ships in Asia and a Guide for Tankers Operating in Asia Against Piracy and Armed Robbery Involving Oil Cargo Theft.
On the occasion of the 10th anniversary, a special high-level meeting was held in which several ministers from the cooperating countries took part. At the meeting, a clear signal was sent about the need for continued cooperation and for the development of ReCAAP into a "Centre of Excellence." The goal is that this should come about in the years up to 2020.