London, 10 March 2016. Fishermen in Bangladesh will benefit from more lifejackets from the Asian arm of the International Maritime Rescue Federation (IMRF), which also intends to share best practice with maritime search and rescue (SAR) organisations in the area.

The Asia-Pacific Regional Centre (APRC) is growing in stature and influence and, in a busy schedule, has plans to meet with SAR representatives from a range of organisations and countries.

A representative will attend the Mongolian National Vessel Safety seminar – the first time the IMRF has been to the country – as well as visiting Japanese and Korean SAR organisations to exchange ideas.

On those agendas will be IMRF member development, Mass Rescue Operation (MRO) planning; the development of case studies, as well as SAR personnel exchanges.

“The APRC is reaching out to relevant SAR organisations to glean knowledge from them and also to pass on the guidelines and knowledge the IMRF has developed and accumulated,” says Bruce Reid, IMRF Chief Executive.

“Since its inception it has made tremendous strides in the region and we are confident that we’ll be able to add to our growing membership through the APRC’s increasing contact with organisations that share our desire to prevent loss of life in the world’s waters.”

The APRC is also organising member recruitment and fundraising activity in Hong Kong, promoting the Centre among ship owners and the P&I Club.

Later in the year, the Asia- Pacific regional MRO workshop will be held in co-operation with the members Malaysia Global SAR Resources in Kuala Lumpur and in a separate project there are plans to cooperate with Dalian and Shanghai Maritime Universities to do a case study and research on the big MRO incidents within the region. An Asia-Pacific Regional Development meeting is also scheduled for Qing Dao in September coinciding with the China Rescue and Salvage International Conference.

Advancing SAR development initiatives started in 2016 will be a priority including assisting with the training for crews at the Sri Lankan Lifeboat institute and further providing additional support to help improve the safety of artisanal fishermen in the region.