The International Chamber of Shipping has chosen Hong Kong as its base for the organisation’s liaison office to China, it has been learned. As yet it appears there has not been an official announcement.
Hongkongmaritimehub.com understands that a representative is yet to be chosen and an interview process will begin soon.
When hongkongmaritimehub.com interviewed the then secretary general, Peter Hinchliffe, and his heir apparent, Guy Platten in July 2018, they outlined why representation in Asia was considered necessary and what the initial tasks of that representation might be:
It’s about growing the ICS presence in a way that is fully reflective of the growing importance of the region,” said Mr Platten.
“Because we are located in Europe we have the benefit of actually being able to speak with the governments directly with the national associations. That is an element that is missing from our presence in Asia, and that is an area that the nominated person will have to work on,” he added.
It’s quite likely that an early task for the appointed representative will be to try to get the Chinese Shipowners Association to join ICS, an objective thus far denied, as well as recruiting other associations in the ASEAN region.
“Getting China to engage with us more formally is an objective,” added Mr Hinchliffe.
It might therefore be speculated that Hong Kong gained the edge in the competition to be chosen location by virtue of its proximity and close relations with the Chinese mainland.