Selected key notes from the Maritime Information Exchange Vessel Operators’ Meeting (MIEVOM) held on 21 April 2016
Cdr Peter Harriman, OiC UKMTO Dubai
The Big 3’s (CMF/NATO/EU) assessment had not changed from the last MIEVOM in that the intent and capability to conduct piracy still remains if the opportunity presents itself and that piracy in the Indian Ocean is suppressed but not eradicated.
Reduction in vessels taking convoys/group transits - figures from MSCHOA show the number of vessels taking group transits remains at approx. 20% of vessels registering whilst those taking convoys had dropped significantly over the last 2 years from 12% to 4% with convoys almost down to a ratio of 1 to 1.
Many vessels transiting closer to the Somali Coast.
MSCHOA reported that prior to the HRA reduction AST (Armed Security Team) numbers decreased marginally across the whole Operating Area but from Oct 15 onwards the percentage drop was more pronounced. On the Indian coast the Arabian Gulf/SE Asia traffic had seen a AST percentage drop from 21% to 15% and in the Arabian Sea from 36% to 28%.
Capt Bill Nault USN, Combined Maritime Forces (CMF), Chief of Staff
Discussing previous capture and detentions of pirates, Capt Nault mentioned that many jail terms were now coming to an end and there was concern that once returned to their homes it would be easy for them to return to piracy. Although numbers in the camps had reduced they can easily be rebuilt. Concern regarding the recent escape of Mohammad Garfanje was also mentioned.
The Industry led changes to the HRA on 1 Dec 15 had seen a significant reduction in the use of ASTs, convoys and group transits. However, reports received from masters highlighted concerns of feeling vulnerable when leaving the IRTC convoys, particularly from new and inexperienced masters
For a full report of the MIEVOM please contact ASKET or UKMTO