EU — Industry Best Management Practices Version 3, a real step forward in self-protection for Merchant Ships

Best Man­age­ment Prac­tices 3 (BMP3) is now avail­able for the pub­lic in book­lets and on It rep­re­sents a real step change; the book­let will sig­nif­i­cant­ly encour­age wider adop­tion of self pro­tec­tion mea­sures by ships tran­sit­ing the High Risk Areas and ulti­mate­ly help reduce the num­ber of pirat­ed ships off the coast of Soma­lia.

Defen­sive mea­sures
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The pur­pose of the Indus­try Best Man­age­ment Prac­tices (BMP) is to assist ships to avoid, deter or delay pira­cy attacks off the coast of Soma­lia, the Gulf of Aden (GoA) and the Ara­bi­an Sea. Expe­ri­ence, sup­port­ed by data col­lect­ed by Counter Pira­cy Forces, shows that the appli­ca­tion of the rec­om­men­da­tions con­tained with­in this book­let can and will make a sig­nif­i­cant dif­fer­ence in pre­vent­ing a ship becom­ing a vic­tim of pira­cy.

BMP has become ful­ly rec­og­nized as the stan­dard for guid­ance and pro­tec­tion for ship­ping from pira­cy off the coast of Soma­lia across the Glob­al Mar­itime Com­mu­ni­ty. 25,000 copies of the book­let will be pub­lished and the inten­tions of Indus­try are to make the book­let freely avail­able and ensure wide and effec­tive dis­tri­b­u­tion of this book­let is achieved so that the book­let will become stan­dard doc­u­men­ta­tion on the bridge of all Mer­chant Ships. Where pos­si­ble, this book­let should be read with ref­er­ence to the Mar­itime Secu­ri­ty Cen­tre – Horn of Africa web­site (, which pro­vides addi­tion­al and updat­ed advice. As intel­li­gence has been gath­ered and lessons learned eval­u­at­ed, indus­try has been able to update and revise this guid­ance, which has been har­monised and coor­di­nat­ed by all con­cerned par­ties dur­ing the revi­sion process.

Major Gen­er­al Buster Howes, Oper­a­tion Com­man­der EU NAVFOR com­ments: “EU NAVFOR wel­comes the devel­op­ment of Best Man­age­ment Prac­tice 3. It enhances the mea­sures that mer­chant ships can take in order to deter pirate attacks. The adop­tion of these self-pro­tec­tion mea­sures is the sin­gle most effec­tive way to help EU NAVFOR and oth­er coali­tion forces to deter pira­cy and to respond effec­tive­ly if ships are under attack”.

The revi­sion of this doc­u­ment has been con­duct­ed by and with full par­tic­i­pa­tion and agree­ment by the 13 Indus­try Organ­i­sa­tions who are sig­na­to­ries to it, as well as in full con­sul­ta­tion with com­bined naval forces – EUNAVFOR, the NATO Ship­ping Cen­tre and the Unit­ed King­dom Mar­itime Trade Oper­a­tions (UKMTO).

EU NAVFOR Soma­lia – Oper­a­tion ATALANTA’s main tasks are to escort mer­chant ves­sels car­ry­ing human­i­tar­i­an aid of the World Food Pro­gramme (WFP) and ves­sels of African Union Mis­sion in Soma­lia, AMISOM and to pro­tect vul­ner­a­ble ves­sels in the Gulf of Aden and Indi­an Ocean and to deter and dis­rupt pira­cy. EU NAVFOR also mon­i­tors fish­ing activ­i­ty off the coast of Soma­lia.

Press release