This week I had the pleasure to speak at an event organized by the maritime security team at the Institute for Security Studies in Pretoria. The event was titled “Safe, secure and stable seas: how are African navies contributing?”. The discussion provided an opportunity to review the current state of maritime security in Africa and investigate in particular two issues: firstly, the role of navies in contributing to maritime security, secondly, the capacity building needs of African countries.
In my talk I summarized some of the core insights from our 2020 book “Capacity Building for Maritime Security. The Western Indian Ocean Experience” and ideas derived from the ongoing AMARIS project that studies maritime security in Ghana. In particular I stressed the importance of the diversity of states in terms of their maritime security challenges, the importance of the coordination problem and the lack of attention to sustainability of capacity building initiatives.