The Regional Cooperation Agreement on Combating Piracy and Armed Robbery against ships in Asia (ReCAAP) Information Sharing Center (ISC) will remain hosted by Singapore for five additional years.
Because Singapore serves as a global hub for international shipping, and is centrally located in the Asia Pacific region, it is an advantageous location for an important anti-piracy organization’s headquarters.
With the move, Singapore feels that it has signaled its commitment to combatting piracy and securing an industry that is very important for the economy of the region.
ReCAAP is a multilateral agreement involving 19 Asian countries, originally signed in 2004. The ISC was established as an framework with which to facilitate the sharing of piracy-related information.
Aside from sharing current, up-to-date information on incidents of piracy, local warnings and regional hot spots, ISC also serves as a resource for best-practices. Many shipping companies and individual crews take advantage of the information sharing center.
Successfully combatting such a decentralized threat as piracy demands a robust intelligence sharing apparatus. This is because there are so many nations in this region, and each has numerous institutions responsible for maritime security. Non-state actors such as pirates can easily drift from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, making them very hard to keep track of and therefore combat.
ReCAAP ISC aims to create a multinational network of piracy-related information. The more countries that actively participate and make use of ReCAAP’s resources, the large the anti-pirate dragnet in Southeast Asia becomes.