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Countering Maritime Piracy and Robbery in Southeast Asia: The Role of the ReCAAP Agreement

EIAS Briefing Paper No. 2013/2

18 Pages Posted: 19 Oct 2013  

Miha Hribernik

European Institute for Asian Studies (EIAS); University of Ljubljana; University of Bristol - School of Sociology, Politics and International Studies (SPAIS)

Date Written: March 1, 2013

Abstract

The surge in maritime piracy and robbery in Southeast Asia that followed in the wake of the 1997 Asian Financial Crisis led to the drafting of the Regional Cooperation Agreement on Combating Piracy and Armed Robbery against Ships in Asia (ReCAAP) by 16 countries in 2004. This paper presents three arguments: First, that ReCAAP has become one of the cornerstones of counter-piracy efforts in Southeast Asia, and has managed to significantly decrease the number of attacks in the region since their peak in 2000. Although the economic crisis that began in 2009 fuelled a renewed rise in the number of incidents, the situation appears to have been successfully stabilised in 2012. Second, the accession of Malaysia and Indonesia – the only two Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) member states that are not ReCAAP contracting parties – would increase the mechanism’s efficiency. The accession of Indonesia in particular could help address the rapidly increasing number of piracy and robbery incidents in the country’s waters and harbours. Third, ReCAAP represents an ideal opportunity for the European Union (EU) and European countries to increase their influence in Southeast Asia and gain a foothold as security actors in the region.

Keywords: maritime piracy, Singapore, Japan, piracy and armed robbery, ReCAAP, international security, maritime security

JEL Classification: H56

Suggested Citation

Hribernik, Miha, Countering Maritime Piracy and Robbery in Southeast Asia: The Role of the ReCAAP Agreement (March 1, 2013). EIAS Briefing Paper No. 2013/2. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2342274

Miha Hribernik (Contact Author)

European Institute for Asian Studies (EIAS) ( email )

Rue de la Loi 67
Brussels, 1040
Belgium

University of Ljubljana ( email )

1000

University of Bristol - School of Sociology, Politics and International Studies (SPAIS) ( email )

Bristol BS8 1TH
United Kingdom

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