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The Annual General Meeting (2015) of the Nautical Institute Hong Kong Branch was held at the Mariners' Club
Around 25 members and friends gathered on 19 June for the Hong Kong branch AGM. The wine tasting was arranged immediately afterwards.
Hon Chairman Capt. Vikrant Malhotra MNI reported on a busy year of activities.
Good evening Ladies and Gentlemen,
A very warm welcome to all Members and Guests, at this Wine Tasting Event, which has now become a regular feature at our AGM. As in the previous years, we’ve yet again had an exciting 12 months. A busy calendar year filled with intriguing presentations, discussions and many fun activities.
Now, I do understand I stand between you all and some very classy wines, so in everyone’s and my own interest as well we’ll make this very short.
Firstly we need to thank our speakers, starting from Mr. Chan Kwok Wai who had retired from Hong Kong Marine Department, including a tenure of 16 years in maritime search and rescue (SAR). He gave us insights into the working of the Search and Rescue System of Hong Kong and latest development of Cospas-Sarsat". In early November, we were fortunate to have a presentation from Walter Vervloesem. He is the Chairman of the Belgian branch of the Nautical Institute and the author of several NI publications. He spoke upon one of his favorite topic, that on Ultrasonic testing and Maintenance of Hatch Covers. In fact in November last year we had two presentations, the second which is very close to heart for most Hong Kongers, especially those forming the Maritime cluster. Excellent analysis and view point’s from industry leaders on the Development of Hong Kong Major Maritime Centre. The speakers included Richard Colwill of BMT and Mr. Peter Cremers and Capt. Pradeep Chawla of Anglo Eastern Ship Management. The past 12 months have been extremely special in terms of quality of speakers, as we had Mike Mallin of Hill Dickinnson, another industry great, provided us insights not only once, but twice on the salvage industry, on the wreck removal process for the Costa Concordia and Salvage of large container vessels. Last but not the least, we learnt from our very own brach secretary Donal Keaney, on a topic which has now received its due attention in the shipping industry, that of Seafarers Rest Hours and Fatigue.
As always, we’ve also made time to have some fun activities along the way. A boat trip to Tin Hau temple generously arranged by our Vice Chairman Carlos Antao. An afternoon trip across the harbor, a fine day out with the families enjoying the sun and sand. 30th anniversary dinner celebrations, coupled with a bowling tournament, organized by John Wilson and Aalok Sharma that too at a very short notice. In fact it is now planned to have the Bowling Competition as an annual event.
Thank you all…..
Now let’s move to our forthcoming events. These include a talk on Ships’ cranes – problems and their prevention by one of our very active committee member Paul Walton, LOC Group on 17th September at the Mariners Club. Our full day Biennial seminar is scheduled to be held on 23rd October this year on a topic which is of great interest to both members and guest, “Competencies of a future mariner”. We hope to have the best speakers in the industry, globally, to present at this seminar. Suggest you mark your calendars as we are confident of a large turnout. The venue for the seminar would be the Superstar Virgo. We also have a presentation planned by SOS international on 17th November. Details, speaker and venue TBC.
For updated information please do visit our website, which is always promptly maintained up to date, courtesy Capt. Luca Ferrerio.
We would like to invite members, old and new, to join the NI committee. We would also like to invite non-members to join NI membership. We are now able to process membership applications locally, forms are available at the entrance table.
I must mention that the NI Hong Kong branch coffers are not as healthy as in previous years, and we do look forward to generous donations from you all. This would allow us to continue offering you meaningful events throughout the year. We thank all the company’s, and organizations that have traditionally supported us over the years and enabled us to arrange evening presentations and cocktails events free of charge for all. It also allows us to make donations to the Mission of Seafarers and provide sponsorship for local Hong Kong Cadets.
This year we were invited by the ICS HKG branch for a joint event, wherein Mr. Deepak Kamran, Regional Sales and Marketing Manager for Marine and Diesel Engine Business, Innospec, Singapore presented on Marine Fuels Challenges 2015 and Beyond. This was a great initiative of pooled resources and guests. We could consider more such events in the future. We have also taken up membership of the Shanghai International Shipping Institute, for greater interaction with like-minded professional bodies in the region. The institute and members are actively involved in providing support to the local Hong Kong cadets both in way of sponsorships and teaching support. Through an initiative by James MacGowan and others, the Nautical Institute along with the Mission to Seafarers has offered to extend support to Mariners stranded or abandoned in Hong Kong.
A special thanks to our venue coordinators, Marso Law for the Police Officers Club, Luca and Peter Lam for the Mariners Club and Donal Keaney for allowing us to use the conference room at the office of Smyth and Co in association with RPC.
Lastly, my sincere thanks go to all the committee members, A great effort put in by the committee, a special mention for Alan, Aalok, Amit, Shiraz, John, Paul, Donal, Petty, Luca, Carlos & Marso – to the NI HKG members, friends and supporters, and also personally for me to my two bosses – Capt. Chawla at office and my wife the big boss at home for allowing me to spend a few precious hours for the NI activities.
I would like to offer a toast. Let us all raise our glasses – Good health – Calm and Safe voyages – to the seafarers.