Publication Details

S. Bateman, 'Maritime security: a new environment following September 11' (Paper presented at the Proceedings of the Symposium of Marine Experts to Assist in Implementation of the Secure Trade in the APEC Region (STAR) Initiative, Melbourne 18-20 June 2003, Melbourne, 18-20 June).


The Asia-Pacific region is distinctly maritime in character. When we centre a globe on the Pacific Ocean, the blue of the ocean almost obscures the littoral landmasses but spin the globe until it is centred on the mid-Atlantic and landmasses then dominate the oceans. Not surprisingly, Atlantic nations tend towards a continental view of security while Asia-Pacific nations have a maritime view. The importance of maritime security to many Asia-Pacific countries is reflected in the size of their merchant shipping fleets, a dependence on seaborne trade, expanding naval forces, and strongly promoted claims to offshore sovereignty and marine resources. Maritime security is likely to assume even greater importance in the future as economic growth proceeds, and countries become both more interdependent and more aware of the extent of their maritime interests. Events of September 11 and their aftermath have had the effect of bringing a new focus to some aspects of maritime security in the region but we should not lose sight of the enduring features that underpin maritime security.

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