‘Maritime security the key to trade’

Published - June 10, 2014 09:49 am IST - CHENNAI:

Despite the U.S.A desiring that India play the role of a leader in Indian Ocean region, the latter was reluctant and did not want to exercise its hegemony in the region, P.K. Ghosh, of Observer Research Foundation said on Monday.

“Instead, India wants to take all nations along and going together has more gains,” the retired navy officer said, during a press conference on the eve of a two-day conference on maritime security.

The conference is being conducted by U.S. Consulate General, Chennai in association with the foundation. Seconding Mr. Ghosh’s views was David Michel, director of Environmental Security at Stimson Centre, a U.S.-based think tank, which is part of the conference.

Mr. Ghosh said that maritime security was key to ensure smooth trade through the ocean routes as the world over, more than 3 billion US dollars was being spent on security, mostly to combat piracy every year.

With pirates becoming tech-savvy, countries faced greater challenges in keeping them at bay. In some Indian Ocean countries, the economic zones were located so far away that it was difficult for administrators to keep a watch. Pirates exploited this scenario by poaching fish stocks and depriving fishermen of their catch. David Gainer, Public Affairs Officer, U.S. Consulate, was present.

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