The Roles of Flag States in Maritime Security Governance: A Case Study of the East African Community

Hamad Bakar Hamad


The roles of the flag state in maritime security have recently been increasing due to the escalation of maritime security threats caused by non-state actors such as piracy, armed robbery against ships, illegal fishing, and marine environment degradation. The nexus between maritime security and flag states is very strong. This is because flag states have exclusive jurisdiction over ships flying their flags and ships are the primary tool used in all non-state maritime security threats. This study investigates the possibility of the East African Community (EAC) utilising its flag states to cover up the existing maritime safety and security governance gap in the region. While that could be possible, the EAC lacks the necessary legal and institutional frameworks to do so. The study intends to encourage the EAC Secretariat and the politicians among the EAC member states on the importance of aligning civilian institutions such as maritime authorities with other maritime law enforcement agencies against regional maritime security threats.

Keywords: Maritime security governance; East African Community; Flag state

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ISSN (Paper)2224-5766 ISSN (Online)2225-0484

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