Sea Transportation: April 3, 2005


Japan, increasingly concerned over piracy, and potential terrorism, in the Straits of Malacca, is offering to send coast guard ships to help patrol this vital waterway between Malaysia and Indonesia. Japans economy would be badly hurt if the straights were closed, as this would force tankers and other merchant vessels to take longer routes to and from Japan. With the current shipping shortage, this would drive shipping rates way up. Japan has already been training Indonesian naval and coast guard personnel at Japanese bases.


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