Hong Kong Shipping Register
The Hong Kong Shipping Register (HKSR) administered by the Marine
Department is recognised as a world-class register providing excellent services. In
2006, it continued to take part in the demanding US Coast Guard's QUALSHIP 21
Scheme confirming its status as a quality flag.
Hong Kong continued to attract top quality ships in 2006. This fact was
reflected in the 32.5-million gross tonnage recorded in the HKSR at the end of the
year, establishing the HKSR as one of the world's top ten shipping registers.
To ensure high standards, the Marine Department conducts a Pre-registration
Quality Control (PRQC) assessment of ships intending to join the register, and a Flag
State Quality Control (FSQC) System to ensure ships under the register comply fully
with international standards. During the year, the department's surveyors and
auditors carried out a total of eight PRQC inspections and made 40 FSQC visits to
ships and related companies. As a result of the quality control measures, the
detention rate for Hong Kong-registered ships remained well below the world
An annual tonnage charge (ATC) reduction scheme was introduced in 2006.
Under it, a ship that has remained on the HKSR for two consecutive years and has not
been detained by authorities in any port during that time will be be entitled to a
six-month fee cut in the following year.
Marine Accident Investigations
The department's Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) investigates all
serious marine accidents involving vessels in HKSAR waters. The department also
investigates all serious accidents outside the HKSAR involving Hong Kong-registered
Summaries of the investigation reports are posted on the department's website
and copies of the reports are made available to the public on request to promote
Depending on the seriousness of the accident and on public interest in it, a
public inquiry to be carried out by a Marine Court may be ordered by the Chief
Executive. In the case of an accident involving a licensed pilot, a Board of
Investigation may be ordered by the Director of Marine. In 2006, the MAIB
investigated 25 serious accidents.
The department's Shipping Registry and Seafarers Branch supervises the
registration, employment, competence, discipline, health, safety and welfare of Hong
Kong seafarers as well as seafarers working on board Hong Kong-registered ships.
During the year, some 19 800 seafarers of different nationalities served on board
Hong Kong-registered ships. About 1 150 officers and ratings served on high-speed
passenger vessels plying within the river trade area.
The Sea-going Training Incentive Scheme was launched in July 2004 to meet the
maritime industry's increasing demand for local qualified personnel with sea-going
experience. The training scheme provides financial incentives for young people to
take up sea-going training as cadets, which paves the way for them to become shore-based
professionals in the maritime industry. By the end of 2006, a total of 58 cadets
had joined the training scheme.