IG: Sea thefts and attempted actions in Singapore strait during July-Nov 2020

The infographic herebelow is an update of the last IG issued by IFC on the robbery taking place in the East Bound Lane of Singapore Strait. .

The shipping industry is still being challenged with the increase of piracy incidents and attacks throughout the globe. Yet, the Singapore strait remains a hot spot for this kind of incidents, with the occurrence of 21 incidents during January-August 2020.

According to the Infographic above, the key facts are that:

  1. Most incidents occurred within hours of darkness between 2300H to 0300H
  2. Majority of targeted vessels (>90%) were east bound
  3. Incidents occurred in east-bound lane of Traffic Separation Scheme in Singapore Strait, North of Batam and Binta.

Accordingly, it is highlighted that in the most cases, the perpetrators are usually in a group of 4 to 6, using small boats. In addition, the attackers aim for slow-moving vessels with low freeboard and are non-confrontational.

In efforts to be protected, the Centre notes that concerning attacks against tankers and bulk carriers:

  1. the perpetrators could be armed with weapons like knives and steel bars;
  2. usually target ship’s engine parts and stores;
  3. same group of perpetrators may target few vessels in succession, in the same night.

In the meantime, concerning tugs and barges, the Centre states that the perpetrators are usually unarmed and go for the ship’s stores.


IFC advises to adopt ship protection measures according to the Regional Guide to Counter Piracy and Armed Robbery Against ships in Asia.

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