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Chairman reports on a successful year
THIS has been another busy year for The Nautical Institute with the Branch taking on many activities both at committee and Branch levels. We have had a full programme of Branch meetings with highlights including, 'The Treatment of Marpol Waste', 'RHKAAF' Marine Rescue Activities', 'PADS Update', and 'Recent Marine Casualties'. In addition to this we enjoyed visits to HMS Invincible and the QE2.
A considerable amount of work has been done, along with the HKIMT, on a proposal for Marine Function Constituency. The purpose of applying for a Function Constituency seat was to enable the maritime community of Hong Kong to have an executive voice in the Government of the Territory and future expansion of maritime activities. Although represented on most boards in relation to port development, the maritime industry does not have a seat at Legco. In a recent speech, Anson Chan made comment that some 350,000 people are involved in marine activities in the Territory and consequently represent a large part of our GDP.
During 1992 the Branch has been involved with representation on the Pilotage Advisory Committee, the Registry Validation Panel and the Port Operation Committee. We have also been involved in highlighting the problems of pirates in the region with Eric Edmondson and Bill Codrington leading this project.
The Marine Accident Reporting Scheme has been well received in Hong Kong; in fact, we have been asked to present details of this before the Shipowners Association. Once again, it is satisfying to see a Nautical Institute initiative being taken seriously.
In 1993 we will continue to have Branch meetings and interesting visits. The Hong Kong branch will continue to strengthen its image in Hong Kong and involvement in maritime matters. Our activities on the various advisory boards will be strengthened and we hope that we will have the opportunity to join other decision-making boards. As the political situation in Hong Kong develops we will also continue to drive maritime interests towards a Functional Constituency.
Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the members of the Committee and indeed all members who regularly attend our Branch meetings.
Contributed by Paul Markland, FNI
Seaways August 1993