Despite the claims of pirates, the ransom paid to release “MV Zirku” apparently fell well short of the widely-quoted figure of $12m.
Once again it seems we are all too quick to accept the words of pirates, because the issues are shrouded in secrecy.
Where facts are few, lies are many…Pirates naturally want to talk the figures up, but perhaps those negotiating would be better off establishing an open ransom payment index.
think of the time that could be saved if there was a ransom guide. Right, let’s see. fully laden VLCC with 25 crew – that will be $5 million dollars please. No messing about, just a fair ransom for an unfair act.
It is believed that the Zirku ransom probably comes somewhere between the $11.5m paid for “Irene SL” and the $9.5m paid for South Korean VLCC “Samho Dream” last year.
Experts believe that the ransom trend is probably upwards over a six month rolling average…the days of the $1m-$1.5m ransoms appear to be over and today the range is more likely to be around $4m-$4.5m. With tankers attracting the highest rates.
While negotiations are important, the real push should be to reduce the time of the hijack, time is money and there is a moral imperitive to get the crew out before the torture starts.