Maritime Insecurity in the Gulf of Guinea: Ghana’s Actual Maritime Crime Picture

Despite the magnitude and implications of transnational organized crime at sea, until recently, the problem had received only minimal attention. That is surprising considering its far-reaching consequences on coastal communities, and its direct correlation to national security. Transnational organized crime at sea, or ‘blue crimes’ include trafficking of arms and light weapons, humans and narcotics, environmental crimes that destroy ecosystems, piracy and armed robbery at sea, and territorial crimes that breach the laws and rules governing territories and jurisdictions.

Blue crimes, often perpetrated by criminals that operate across coastal countries and networks, also have negative implications on the economic prosperity and wellbeing of individuals in coastal communities; more broadly, on the human security of coastal states along the Gulf of Guinea. Ghana is substantially affected by various manifestations of these types of crimes. Specifically, acts of piracy, stowing away, human trafficking, narcotics trafficking and illegal importation of medicines, arms smuggling and illegal, unregulated and unreported (IUU) fishing. In sum, the policy paper examines the true blue crimes picture in Ghana. Read the in-depth analysis of the subject in a report by the AMARIS project. Access the whole report here.