European Union gives $3m for shipping security in the Indian Ocean

By Piracy

The EU is concerned about the maritime security in the Indian Ocean and for that reason it gives €2.3 million ($3 million) in the fight against maritime crimes in the region. The money will be used for improvement of the maritime security. The financial support of the European Union is aiming to create good environment for economic growth in the region.

The EAC (East African Community) continues its fight against the piracy threat, drugs and human trafficking, arms smuggling, illegal fishing and maritime pollution. The stability in the region could be easily threatened by human factor and depletion of the natural resources. The representative of the EU in Tanzania, Filiberto Sebregondi said: 

"Improving maritime security is key to create favourable conditions for economic growth and social development. The Maritime Security (MASE) Programme will support the EAC in taking part in global and regional efforts towards a safer Eastern Africa."

4 organisations of Eastern and Southern Africa (the East African Community (EAC), the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), and the Indian Ocean Commission (IOC)) participate in the so-called Maritime Security (MASE) Programme (supported with €37.5 million).

The financial support programme against maritime crimes is expected to influence regional capacities to implement the Regional Strategy and Action Plan, adopted 4 years ago.

"The threat of piracy in the Indian Ocean has gone down considerably – thanks to the concerted efforts of international and regional partners in the last few years. However, other forms of criminal action at sea have become visible and we should not relent on in our efforts to continue strengthening the tools and capability to enforce law and order on the high seas. Today’s cooperation agreement is part of this effort," Sebregondi said.

Jean-Claude Nsengiyumva, the Deputy Secretary General in-charge of Finance and Administration, announced that the financial support from the EU came right in time and the hope is that this will improve the business opportunities in the region, to eliminate poverty and decrease crimes. In an insecure environment, positive things could not happen. Maritime threats stop the economic development. The EU financial support is expected to improve capabilities for arrest, transfer, detention and prosecution of pirates, both at national and regional levels.