Islamabad: The Contact Group on Piracy off the Coast of Somalia (CGPCS) has announced that new revised limits of the piracy High Risk Area (HRA) have been declared by the shipping industry, which will be effective from Dec 1, 15, said a press release issued by Director General Public Relations Pakistan Navy today.

This has come about after a long and protracted insistence from Pakistan and other affected regional countries. The revision in the limits of HRA puts almost the entire Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of Pakistan out of HRA and as a result the seaborne trade, fishing activity and other research and exploration activities will be benefited. The shipping from the Gulf area and the Far East to Pakistani ports shall now be outside the HRA, which will result in elimination of extra insurance and security charges etc being incurred since 2010.

The inclusion of Pakistan’s EEZ in HRA in 2010 had been opposed by Pakistan. Pakistan Navy in collaboration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs made concerted efforts to exclude Pakistan’s EEZ from HRA. Pakistan’s argument was supported by the fact that no incidents of piracy had occurred in Pakistani EEZ due to Pakistan Navy’s vigilance. Moreover, it was highlighted that Pakistan Navy had gone a step ahead and was contributing its ships to counter piracy in the entire Arabian Sea and had also commanded counter piracy Task Force

CTF 151 for six times to counter menace of piracy around the Horn of Africa.

“The Pakistan Navy remains committed to keeping the high seas free from piracy and other maritimes crimes thereby ensuring safety of the seafarers and free flow of the trade through the shipping lanes passing through the region.”