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Malaysia: The growing risk of piracy

Malaysia has benefited from a far lower risk of terrorism than many of its neighbours, with the threat to foreign businesses and their supply chains being historically lower than elsewhere in Asia. However, the growing threat of maritime piracy in Malaysian waters presents significant operational and security risks to maritime logistical operations. Such risks are particularly pronounced as Malaysian waters incorporate some of the most heavily-used shipping lanes in the region, presenting a highly attractive and opportune environment for pirate syndicates.

According to the new Verisk Maplecroft Global Alerts Dashboard (GAD), incidents of piracy in Malaysian waters have swelled in recent years, from nine actual and attempted piracy attacks in 2013 to 38 in 2014. The high rate of piracy has continued this year, with 13 incidents occurring as of May 2015. Of the 51 incidents that took place between January 2014 and April 2015, 16 involved container, general cargo or bulk ships, highlighting the severe risks posed to commercial operations and goods in transit.