According to this recent article over in eyefortransport, maritime privacy costs [the] global community up to $12 Billion a year (with excess insurance costs alone eating up to $3.2 Billion). In addition, at the end of 2010, around 500 seafarers from more than eighteen countries were being held hostage by pirates, despite the fact that over 238 Million in ransom (including a ransom of 9.5 Million for a South Korean oil tanker) was paid to Somali pirates last year. Ouch!
Furthermore, despite the facts that navy presence (from more than thirty countries) has reduced the rate of successful hijackings, pirates have doubled the number of attacks and expanded their range. In addition, even though merchant seafarers deserve our protection, 85% of pirates pursued and captured end up being released because the countries who catch them don’t have the jurisdiction to prosecute. And over 2600 seafarers have been held hostage in the last three years alone. The 19th century belonged to the mafia. The 20th century belonged to the mob. Looks like the 21st century belongs to the new pirates. Is the risk to life really worth sourcing lead point toys and melamine milk from global destinations?