Even though some somali pirates have been retiring, as nicely summarized in this recent article on Somali Piracyin The Economist, piracy is just too damn lucrative. Especially given the other employment options available to the pirates.
As per the Economist article, the average ransom for a ship between 2005 and 2012 was $2.7 Million. Each pirate involved in the hijacking received between $30,000 and $75,000, with a bonus of up to $10,000 for the first man to board a ship and for each man who had their own weapon. Think about that. On average, one hijacking earned a man more than he would earn from a full time job in the US (where the average man earns approximately $45,000 a year). Now it is true that pirates are charged considerably more for loaned goods and services than they are worth and often have to pay $20 for $10 of mobile-phone airtime, but even at 100% mark-ups, pirates are still earning a hundred times more from a single hijacking than they would earn otherwise in a country where the average income is in the dollar-per-day range.
And itís not just pirates, and the financiers that organize the missions, that make a killing. Cooks (who feed the crews), pimps, lawyers, merchants (who can provide banknote checkers to detect counterfeit), militia (who control ports and can provide details of cargo and patrol somewhere else on the day of the attack), and even government officials (who can look the other way when ransoms are illegally being flown into a country) also make off quite well. Piracy is a thriving business sector in Somalia, adding 50 M to 100 M annually to an economy that legitimately produces less than 1 Billion in GDP. With no employment opportunities that are nearly as lucrative and no sector with the possibility to create the same level of wealth in the country as piracy, it should be pretty obvious that piracy is not going away any time soon.
Especially since many men donít have any other choice. Many pirates used to be fisherman, an age-old family trade passed downed from their fathers and grandfathers, and they were happy with that life. They learned to cast nets, pull them up, sort the fish, and go to the market to sell the fish for a modest, but acceptable, price at a very young age. But then, as explained in this article on Terror on the Seas, in the early 90′s, civil war broke out, the government collapsed, and maintaining order became impossible. The borders, and the territorial waters, went unprotected and foreign fishing trawlers emptied the waters unchallenged. The once tuna-rich waters were now as fish-free as a dead pond and the fishermen had to do something (or starve). They tried to form their own coast guard, but how much can a few fisherman with the odd dinky do to protect a 2,000 mile coastline against large international vessels. They tried, but up against improbable odds, got desperate, and aggressive Ė eventually storming a vessel and demanding money for its release. The ransom was paid, and they realized they had found a new livelihood which was not contained to fishing vessels. After all, who has more money, a small fishing company or a large international oil company?
What else are the pirates supposed to do? They canít fish, thereís only so much farmland available in a country that is mostly desert and semi-desert, and itís not exactly an outsourced manufacturing or service center. As one pirate said in a 2008 Newsweek article, ďÖ when evil is the only solution, you do evil. That is why we are doing piracy. I know it is evil, but it is a solution.Ē Until they have another viable option, another solution, piracy is going to remain strong.
yeah - I doubt you've seen the last of them.
as the article notes correctly - the guys in Africa who finance this type of crime are the real underlying cause. or one of the main causes, anyway. if the Somali Pirates had been a public company with a real stock offering - their stock value would have soared in their first few years of operation. they were enormously profitable back then ... for very little money down. hence the financiers behind them who got in "on the ground floor" made a real killing. now - not so much.
but this type of crime will rejuvenate itself. piracy will just regenerate somewhere else.
lol Seams yes even with very good salary.
Too much anti-piracy companies distroy buisenes for evrybody even for the anti-pirates, soon they will be back to unemployment.
But hope still high in maybe sea pirates turn to land piracy AQ still in the region.
Kidnapping more easy on land, force expat companies pay protection fees not dificult with a little bit of loud talk (bum).
what's the matter gareth ... you don't get the jargon mate?
abuminyar: very likely the pirates will find gainful employment in other alternate forms of crime. kidnapping is still growing in popularity -if for no other reason than the fact that "football on the tele" isn't very good in a lot of third world countries. and i will not be surprised in piracy rears its ugly head again in the Indian Ocean ... just an entirely different location. someone is bound to work out that the game that the Somali pirates were playing ... can be repeated with fresh faces :-)
Theres always Al Shabaab
Leonidas no pirates no money, ask loyds and maratime security companies.
Who don't like Somalia pirates ?
Is the most decadent service in security easy Money Somali Pirates don't attack ships with armed guards.
But no worries you will have a job, seams piracy now move to in land.
P.S- In my countrie we pay to first countries nationals to work for us.
Pirate Song - Mitch Benn - The Now Show - YouTube
Last edited by abuminyar; 07-12-2013 at 12:19.
Where are you from Abu?