ICC International Maritime Bureau's annual piracy report 2016

By Hendrike Kühl, Policy Director, IUMI

In early January, the ICC International Maritime Bureau's (IMB) released their annual piracy report for 2016. On a positive note, the report outlines an encouraging development indicating that piracy has reached its lowest level since 1998. This translates into 191 incidents reported around the world last year.

On the downside, the number of crew kidnapped was significantly higher than in any of the previous 10 years. 62 people were kidnapped for ransom in 15 separate incidents. Just over half were captured off West Africa; while pirates kidnapped 28 persons from tugs, barges, fishing boats, and merchant ships around Malaysia and Indonesia. This is a threefold increase compared to 2015. Areas with comparatively high numbers of incidents include the Sulu Sea, Nigeria, and Somalia. Some countries have seen sudden surges from no incidents in 2015 to 15 last year.

The IMB recommends to be particularly vigilant or avoid, all together, certain high-risk areas. To ensure the transparency and quality of the periodic reports, and allow for an optimal allocation of resources to combat armed robbery and piracy around the world, shipmasters are called on to report any incident to the IMB.

If you would like to download the full report please visit: