The Gulf of Guinea is understood to be the most dangerous region in the world for seafarers at present. The growth of piracy in that region has been considerable, according to Stuart Edmonston, head of loss prevention at UK P&I Club, who presented the case together with Hellenic War Risks and Terra Firma Risk Management.
A report by Oceans beyond Piracy revealed that there have been 32 kidnaps for ransom in the Gulf of Guinea so far this year, surpassing the total number of incidents(19), recorded by the International Maritime Bureau (IMB) for 2015. The IMB recorded ten incidents and the kidnap of 16 seafarers in the Gulf of Guinea in Q1/2016.
Since April 2015, the Merchant Trade Information Sharing Centre for the Gulf of Guinea (MTISC-GoG) recorded 56 incidents in the area and the kidnap of 35 seafarers. Kidnapping has become more “popular” because improved patrolling (by the Nigerian and other littoral navies) may have made cargo theft more difficult and dangerous.