The increase in piracy off t he coast of Somalia that has l eft dozens of ships hijacked this year is threatening one of Egypt’s main source s of income, the Suez Canal.
The strategic shipping route has become dangerous and some shipping companies ha ve already announced they will reroute south, to Africa’s Cape of Good Hope inst e ad of risking the pirates.
On 15 November, Somali pirates hijacked a Saudi Arabian super-tanker carrying ca rgo worth approximately 100 million dollars and its 25 crew in what has become a
last straw for many.
The hijackers are demanding a ransom of US$ 25 million.
Pirates have hijacked at least 90 vessels this year.
The international community has attempted to install fear into the pirates by de ploying warships to the area.
But for many of the international armada, notably the Americans, the force is un able to open fire unless directly threatened by the pirates and this has left ma n y companies wondering if the situation will change.
A recent conference held by Egypt and its Red Sea neighbors was an attempt to cr eate new means of fighting piracy, but the meeting did little to solve the issue s that could be detrimental to the Egyptian economy.