Another busy year
NINETEEN NINETY-THREE was another busy year, with a whole series of visits and monthly meetings.
No progress was made on the proposal for a Maritime Constituency in the Legislative Council due to the current political impasse between Britain and China. At this stage it is impossible to say how matters will resolve themselves, but it is conceivable that this project could be reactivated in 1994. In other areas, however, we have been extremely busy. The Branch still maintains a representative on the validation panel of the Hong Kong Registry of Ships which is responsible for evaluating requests from other countries in regard to reciprocal certification rights to permit their seafarers on Hong Kong vessels.
We have an extremely active member in Alan Loynd on the port operations panel, which is responsible for making operational recommendations in relation to the workings of the port of Hong Kong. This is an important panel in the light of the fact that the maritime traffic in Hong Kong is increasing exponentially. The Institute is also represented on the pilot advisory committee by David Ewings; this committee is tasked with advising the Marine Department on matters relating to port pilotage. In 1993 it has been involved in a project to determine the future shape of the pilotage organisation through to the turn of the century.
Focusing on branch meetings, a visit was arranged to the China Light & Power Station at Tap Shek Kok followed by lunch and then on to the Wahmo current model in Tuen Mun. This trip was enjoyed by all even though the weather was atrocious. An extremely informative branch meeting was held with a speaker from Oceanroutes, a company specialising in transatlantic and transpacific weather routeing. On 16 November the Nautical Institute Accident Prevention and Loss Seminar was held under the chairmanship of the President of The Nautical Institute, Len Holder. This had a better than expected attendance and raised the profile of the Institute in Hong Kong through the media coverage. The annual visit to Ji Fung in October was well attended.
Since Christmas we have visited the Canberra. The Annual Dinner in March was one of the best we have ever had; almost 90 people attended the mess hall of HMS Tamar, with our guest speaker Dr Stanley Ho.
Reporting that he was stepping down as Chairman of the Hong Kong Branch after three years and handing the helm over to Bill Codrington, Captain Markland said: 'I have enjoyed myself immensely leading the branch and I am extremely grateful to all the members of the Committee who have supported me.
'Looking to the future, the next three years for The Nautical Institute in Hong Kong will be as exciting as the future of Hong Kong itself. We need to have more say in the operation of the port and it is very important that we try to get a member of our committee on the Port Development Board.
'I must once again thank HMS Tamar, the Police Officers Club and China Navigation for being so helpful during the year in relation to bookings for meals and meetings and thank those members of the committee who have arranged these venues. I would like to record the departure of three active members during the year: Paul Owen, who set up and ran the newsletter for so long as well as being our secretary; Mike Pickthorne, who succeeded Paul and who has now moved to the Cayman Islands; and Daryl Braganza, who returned to India and reappeared in The Nautical Institute there. Finally, May I wish Bill Codrington and the incoming committee success for the future'.
Contributed by P.A.S. Markland, FNI
Seaways July 1994