Ecuador hosts international seminar to support regional authorities against the threat of illicit maritime traffic
The European Seaport Cooperation Programme (SEACOP) has organised the international seminar “The Pacific-Atlantic axis: how to offer a global response against illicit maritime trafficking” in the city of Guayaquil, Ecuador.
The seminar aims to establish a comprehensive strategy to support the fight of regional authorities against the threat of illicit maritime trafficking, more specifically drug trafficking, in the Pacific area to Europe. The aim of this activity is to contribute to the improvement of intelligence gathering throughout the whole process of crime along the cocaine route, from the producer countries to the final destination.
The event was attended by local authorities from the Pacific region, Colombia, Peru and Panama, as well as European shipping companies and port authorities. The seminar was opened by the Ecuadorian vice-minister of foreign affairs, the director of the European External Action Service and the director of the SEACOP V project.
“As illicit maritime trafficking continues to grow in European ports, such as Antwerp, regional cooperation needs to be further strengthened. We also need a concerted and coordinated global response, involving all sectors, from shipping companies to port authorities and operators in the countries suffering from this scourge,” said Dominique Bucas, SEACOP V project manager.
Following the success of the four previous phases of the SEACOP project, the European Union is funding this fifth phase, which has the general objective of building capacity and strengthening international cooperation in the fight against maritime trafficking and associated criminal networks in West Africa, Latin America, and Europe.
This fifth phase, led by Expertise France and with the collaboration of the FIIAPP, aims to promote the creation of structures that make use of available information through international cooperation.