Over the last three years, Benin’s coastal areas have witnesses extraordinary phenomena. These are acts of piracy and armed robbery. Ships are attacked, valuable items are taken away and especially petroleum products are siphoned. The year 2011 saw an upsurge of the phenomenon where about twenty attacks were recorded. As a result, Benin’s coastal areas were declared risk zones by the International Maritime Organization. The impact of the attacks against ships no longer needs any proof. Thus, insurance companies have doubled their premiums; tonnage at the Cotonou harbor has diminished, since it dropped from an annual figure of seven million recorded earlier to less than six million in 2011, representing a loss of custom revenue amounting to 81 million dollars. In addition to all this is the diversion of traffic to safer shores.
By Jean-Paul IBIKOUNLE.
Broadcasted January 5, 2013 at 10.15 on Radio Bénin.
Listnen to the program in French Pirates en déroute.