Chapter 17 Models for Maritime Collaboration in the South China Sea: National-level Coordination

In: Cooperation and Engagement in the Asia-Pacific Region
Brian Wilson
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The era of addressing at-sea challenges exclusively with a navy warship or coast guard cutter has evolved into a more distributed response environment. The maritime enforcement spectrum now includes a number of government departments, such as the military, law enforcement, health, treasury, and the diplomatic corps. More agencies are involved because threats are more complex, authorities are more widely allocated, and the end-state is often the courtroom or regulatory action. These agencies, however, frequently operate under different chains of command. As such, information may not always be shared and responses not synchronized. Decisions such as how to respond to malware on a tanker plying the high seas; logistics details related to how captured pirates will be transported from a warship to a prosecuting State; and the response to a vessel with a passenger possibly infected with a lethal contagion almost always involves multiple agencies. This article focuses on the emergence of whole-of-government frameworks, supported by checklists, to better position States to collaboratively identify and confront contemporary maritime security challenges.

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