In its latest issue paper, Oceans Beyond Piracy, touch upon the issue of privately contracted armed maritime security, saying that the use of armed guards as a security solution at sea is characterized by private security companies providing armed protection for assets.
In the paper, Private Maritime Security is divided into two categories:
- Private Maritime Security Companies (PMSCs) that provide armed teams.
- Privately Contracted Armed Security Personnel (PCASP), which are the actual teams deployed on vessels.
PMSCs are private companies registered and controlled from countries far away from the area in which they operate, and which they offer their PCASPs to protect merchant vessels transiting high risk international waters.
Nowadays, PMSCs vary from boutique companies that are protecting a single client or small consortium of client ship-operators, to large security
conglomerates which may incorporate hundreds of land-based and maritime clients, and over 30 PCASPs protecting client vessels at an given moment. Oceans Beyond Piracy says.
Albeit their various operational activities, hiring PCASPs working for PMSCs is an effective counter-piracy measure, as PCASP is recommended and some times required by many operators for vessels transiting the HRA.
Most of the PMSCs are registered in the United Kingdom, however, more and more PMSCs are registering in other countries like Greece, Cyprus, Malta, and China, as well as new companies starting up in offshore jurisdictions such as Belize, Panama, and the UAE.
PCASP team size can differ depending on the laws of the security company’s country, the client vessel’s budget, CSO or SSO preference and requirements imposed by the vessel’s flag state.
Finally, their cost can vary too. The monthly average cost in order to deploy one PCASP team can be found through the example of a 10 day voyage. Below you can see a rough estimation of how much a 4- man mixed team would cost, as provided by Oceans Beyond Piracy.
You can read more about Privately Contracted Armed Maritime Security in the PDF herebelow