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Maritime Governance in Somalia: reinforcing cooperation between administrations to improve maritime protection and development
Strengthening cooperative mechanisms at national and regional level to effectively address the challenges of maritime safety on the Somali coast, is one of the main objective that came out of the 5th meeting of the Maritime Security Coordination Committee (MSCC), held last August in Entebbe, Uganda.
Organized by the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), this forum, which brought together the Federal Government of Somalia and regional administrations, the National Maritime Coordination Committee (NMCC), the Maritime Coordination Committee (MCC) as well as other regional and international stakeholders, was the occasion for them to reaffirm their commitment to enhance their collaboration and also to make an assessment of all the projects initiated in 2016.
In line with the Somali Maritime Resource and Security Strategy (SMRSS), the MSCC, which forms part of the regional integrated maritime policy, aims at creating greater involvement of stakeholders to deal with common issues. Indeed, this mechanism addresses a serious lack of cooperation between the different Somali administrations to manage efficiently its waters and adjacent coastal areas.
In this context, the MSCC was founded to coordinate inter-agency collaborations at the national level, but also to tackle political, legal, security and maritime administration issues, among others, to optimize the use of resources and promote further synergy in actions.
According to Ambassador Tewolde Gebremeskel, Director of the Peace and Security Division of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), effective maritime security can only be achieved through real inter-agency cooperation at both national and regional levels. “I am satisfied with the work done so far on governance and resource utilization capacities for the development of Somalia and for the benefits of its people. With the support of IGAD, we are committed to further support MSCC’s initiatives while strengthening links between regional states and the federal government through various mechanisms, such as the MSCC, which is already operational” highlighted Ambassador Gebremeskel.
Furthermore, IGAD, together with three other regional organizations, namely the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), the East African Community (EAC) and the Indian Ocean Commission (IOC), implements the EU-funded Maritime Security Programme (MASE). In this context, IGAD has been actively involved in the establishment and operationalisation of the Maritime Safety Coordination Committees such as MSCC in Somalia.
The Maritime Security Coordination Committee (MSCC)
Established in 2014 during the 17th plenary meeting of the Contact Group on Piracy off the coast of Somalia (CGPCS), the Maritime Security Coordination Committee (MSCC) is an important platform to coordinate information with the objective of implementing and optimizing anti-piracy programmes and maritime safety capacity building activities.
This mechanism aims at promoting collaboration and development of maritime safety between Somalia National Maritime Coordination Committee (NMCC), Somali Regions Maritime Coordination Committee (MCC) including the regions of Puntland, Galmudug, Juba Interim Administration (JIA) and Somaliland’s anti-piracy programme.
MSCC’s responsibilities include:
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