Published: 11 August 2021 Author: Stefan Talmon
On 1 August 2021, Germany became the 21st contracting party of the Regional Cooperation Agreement on combating piracy and armed robbery against ships in Asia (ReCAAP), a regional agreement to promote and enhance cooperation against piracy and armed robbery against ships in Asia. ReCAAP was opened for signature on 11 November 2004 and entered into force on 4 September 2006. On 29 November 2006, the ReCAAP Information Sharing Centre was established in Singapore which enhances regional cooperation in combatting piracy and armed robbery at sea through information sharing, capacity building and cooperative arrangements. In accordance with Article 18(5) of ReCAAP, Germany became a Contracting Party 60 days after depositing the instrument of accession with the depository, the Government of Singapore, on 2 June 2020.
The Federal Government explained Germany’s motivation for acceding to ReCAAP as follows:
“The freedom and security of trade routes is important for the German economy. […] Some 60 percent of German exports are handled via international shipping routes. In recent years, the number of incidents against ships in Asian waters has risen continuously. […] Attacks on ships that put the security of vessels and their crews at risk are increasing and threatening the trade routes between Asia and Europe. Germany is seeking to play a more active role in combating and preventing piracy in this region of the world.”
Germany’s accession to ReCAAP is part of a strategic realignment of German foreign policy in the Indo-Pacific which was first spelled out in the Federal Government’s “Policy guidelines for the Indo-Pacific region” adopted in September 2020.
Category: Law of the sea