Time to make it count: implementing the UK’s new maritime security strategy

SafeSeas Director Tim Edmunds has produced a Policy Report based on the ideas discussed at the recent SafeSea’s event on Implementing the UK’s 2022 National Strategy for Maritime Security.

 HMS Severn in London. Photo: Lee Blease. UK MOD © Crown copyright 2021

In 2022, the UK government will launch a new National Strategy for Maritime Security (NSMS). The publication of the NSMS comes at a critical time. Maritime threats and risks to the UK continue to evolve and multiply, in home waters and beyond. Brexit has focused new attention on the demands of policing UK waters outside the EU. New foreign policy priorities such as the ‘Indo-Pacific tilt’ gravitate around maritime challenges. Recognition is growing that climate change, over-exploitation and biodiversity loss will pose new risks to the oceans and UK maritime interests.

On 9 June 2022, the University of Bristol and SafeSeas held an IdeasLab in Bristol to reflect on lessons learned from the 2022 NSMS process. The event took place in collaboration with the UK Department for Transport (DfT)and Joint Maritime Security Centre (JMSC). Participants from all major UK maritime security agencies attended, as did academics representing disciplines ranging from international law to security studies.

This Policy Report summarises the findings of the IdeasLab and outlines key policy implications for UK government and other maritime stakeholders.