A new law has been passed that establishes measures to combat maritime piracy. Under certain conditions, a Belgian-flagged ship will now be allowed to rely on maritime security companies to protect the vessel against piracy. This new legislation is a step in the right direction, but there is still work to be done.
Belgium adopted two anti-piracy laws in December 2009. A recent first prosecution demonstrates that they are a step in the right direction. However, some experts have questioned whether they provide sufficient protection for Belgian-flagged ships and their crews, and a number of Belgian shipowners recently called for the right to hire private security forces for their vessels.