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The Most Surprising Comeback of the 21st Century? Piracy

Sea Freight Shipping

Cargo airlines can transport various types of freight to both national and international recipients, but that’s not all. Another added benefit of airline cargo over sea freight shipping — a limited number of pirate attacks.

According to World Politics Review, piracy, surprisingly, has continually caused problems in developed countries. When most people think of piracy, they often picture Somalian pirates in the Horn of Africa. They might also think of Tom Hanks trying to talk them down while out at sea thanks to 2013’s Best Picture nominee, Captain Phillips.

But piracy has significantly decreased in Somalia and is becoming even more of an issue in the more developed nations of West Africa, despite the conception that these governments should be able to prevent plundering out on the sea. The International Maritime Bureau reports that during 2016, there was just one attempted pirating attack in Somalia and there were 31 piracy incidents off the coast of Nigeria during the first nine months of the year.

“We are encouraged by the efforts of national and international authorities – and the shipping industry – to keep piracy down. But clearly the threat to crew being taken hostage remains, and it is therefore necessary for shipmasters and response agencies to remain vigilant,” said Pottengal Mukundan, Director of the International Maritime Bureau.

Globally, there have been 42 attacks this quarter alone, and armed pirates actually took 110 people hostage during the first nine months of 2016, kidnapped 49 seafarers for ransom, and fired at many more vessels.

It’s surprising that something as archaic as piracy is still around today, albeit much less than the past. The “Golden Age of Piracy” lasted from the late 17th century to the early 18th century (between the years of 1716 to 1726). During this time, throughout the Caribbean and other pirate ports experienced rapid growth. At one point during this period, there were roughly 2,400 active pirates across the Atlantic and Indian Oceans.

Sea freight shipping, though dangerous, is still much safer than it was during those years when many pirates openly sailed the sea. Today, because of the increased naval security, significantly smaller number or pirates, and piracy areas confined to small parts of the world, air and ocean cargo are safely transported throughout the world.

If you’re shipping to South America or just want to speak to ocean cargo companies and learn more about sea freight shipping, contact JML DeliverIT.

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