NEWS   trans
Annual meeting of the IMC in Den Helder / Netherlands, 19 to 21 September 2012
From 19 to 21 September 2012, the International Maritime Confederation (IMC) has held its annual meeting, which was hosted this year by the Dutch AVOM (Algemene Vereniging Oud-Personeel Koninklijke Marine) at Den Helder, the seat of the Dutch naval commands and the most important base of the Dutch Navy. The President and Chairman of the Austrian, Belgian, British, Dutch, German, French, Italian naval associations had accepted the invitation of Karl Heid, president of DMB and current president of the IMC.

On the evening of 19 September, the delegates met in maritime atmosphere at the traditional reception on board the ram ship SCHORPIOEN, part of the Naval Museum at Den Helder. Built in France in 1868, the  iron clad served until 1906 as a coastal defence vessel and subsequently was used as an accommodation ship. After the complete restoration, it is as a floating exhibit part of the Naval Museum in Den Helder, which was visited by the delegates on the morning of 20 September. Besides the bridge of the  frigate DE RUYTER, built in 1974, the representatives of the IMC were highly impressed by the museum's exhibition. On about 2000 square meters, the history of naval technology, the Navy maintenance facilities, shipbuilding, transportation, weaponry and navigation is presented. A special part of the exhibition deals with the phenomenon of modern piracy off the Horn of Africa, among the numerous exhibits a pirate attack vessel, a so calles “skiff”, as well as  a mother ship are presented, that had been captured by the Dutch navy.

In the afternoon, a harbor cruise through the naval base in Den Helder, the visit of a submarine and of a technical maintenance facility gave an impressive insight into the excellence of the Dutch navy against the background of a difficult financial situation.

The 21st September was marked by the meeting of the executive committee of the IMC. The representatives of the Belgian, British, German, French, Italian, Dutch and Austrian naval assocoiations were welcomed by Vice Admiral MJM Borsboom, the commander of the Dutch Navy. An important topic in addition to the discussion on the future work of the ISF was the request of the Royal Naval Association (RNA) about possible joint events to commemorate the First World War. For more information on the issues raised will follow in due time.

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