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Top Pirate Countries - The Most Dangerous List in 2022

Pirate assaults are not evenly dispersed over the world's seas, striking developing-country coastal regions more often than developed-country coastal areas. According to the International Maritime Bureau's Piracy Reporting Centre's most recent annual report, total registered assaults were 132, with a decline of 32% in 2021 compared to 2020. One hundred fifteen boats have been boarded, 11 attempted assaults have been made, five vessels have been shot upon, and one ship has been hijacked. The decline is due mainly to decreasing activity in the Gulf of Guinea area, namely in Nigerian waters.

Wilfried Lemmens, Managing Director of the Royal Belgian Shipowners' Association, asserted that "Several factors such as the global pandemic, the decrease in maritime traffic, and the increased presence of international including European naval vessels in specific high-risk zones all contributed to lower numbers last year."

Even though the attacks seem to decrease, the dangers are still great for maritime journeys! Let's explore the top pirate countries and regions that we must keep in sight!

Gulf of Guinea

Despite a dramatic decline in pirate actions in 2021 — a more than 60% reduction from 2020 – the Gulf of Guinea remains a hotspot for worldwide maritime piracy. According to the latest numbers from the ICC International Maritime Bureau, the Gulf of Guinea accounted for over half (43 per cent) of all recorded pirate occurrences in the first three months of 2021. (IMB).

Pirates' primary purpose continues to be crewmember kidnapping, with ten occurrences of at-sea kidnapping resulting in the capture of 71 seamen. Particularly toward the end of the year, there was an upsurge in the amount of violence associated with pirate episodes, with crew members being murdered or wounded (Mozart -Tampen -Tonsberg -Tropical).


Piracy and maritime robberies against commerce ships and oil tankers have increased in recent years in essential shipping routes around Singapore, which have been identified as areas of concern by sea crime watchdog Recap. In 2021, 49 piracy and armed robbery incidents were recorded in the Singapore Strait, a six-year high.

Indeed, these instances happened within a six-nautical-mile radius of the coastline (nearly half of them at anchor). Notably, over half of the occurrences (49) occurred in the Singapore Strait - particularly in the eastern section of the Strait, between 102 and 117 degrees East.

Between January and March this year, the Singapore Strait, one of the world's busiest maritime waterways, saw 17 occurrences of marine robbery - more than twice the number recorded in the same period in 2021.

The surge was most likely caused by the economic effect of Covid-19, which may have prompted individuals to engage in high-seas crime, Recaap Information Sharing Centre (ISC) assistant director of research Lee Yin Mui said on Tuesday (April 5).


In 2021, Peru recorded 18 instances of actual or attempted piracy. Peru had the most real and tried pirate incidents in South America that year, followed by Colombia and Haiti, which recorded six and four occurrences.

Overall, the Callao Anchorage in Peru is another region where pirate activity has increased, with 15 confirmed instances in 2021 – the most since 1991.


Indonesia is also one of the most heavily piracy-affected countries globally. The Anambas, Natuna, and Merundung Islands are among the places targeted by sea pirates, where pirates have been observed to attack ships at night rather than during the day. The Indonesian authorities' punitive reaction to pirates apprehended in the nation is likewise very lax, creating grave global worries.

Pirates like Indonesia because it has a high volume of ships passing through its waters, the ships go slowly due to the tight and potentially dangerous straits, and there are several islands for them to hide. Indonesia is an ideal haven for pirates.


While the direct danger of Somali-based pirate attacks seems to have lessened – after a modification and lowering of the High-Risk Area in September – the IMB Piracy Reporting Centre urges shipmasters to exercise caution, especially while passing near the Somali coast.

Maritime piracy has reached enormous proportions in Somalia because of the region's tremendous poverty due to civil conflict, government ineffectiveness, and massive dumping of poisonous marine wastes in the Somali sea-waters. Other issues have arisen due to piracy, such as rapidly rising insurance premiums.

Bottom Line

Finally, the danger posed by piracy and armed robbery at sea and the opportunity for and modus operandi of the offenders varies significantly across regions and may also alter rapidly. Despite the decrease in the total number of pirate attacks, each recorded incidence erodes the trust of sailors operating ships around the globe.

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