London, Wednesday, 18th December 2013. Chairman of the International Maritime Rescue Federation (IMRF), Michael Vlasto has been awarded the prestigious Magnolia Silver Medal for his outstanding contribution to Shanghai's economic and social development, through the work of the IMRF.
Mr Huang Rong, Deputy Secretary-General of the Shanghai Municipal Government, who presented the award on their behalf, said he appreciated the support Michael had given to them through the promotion of co-operation in the area of maritime search and rescue development between China and the IMRF.
He pointed out that in recent years the IMRF had made important contributions to the prevention of the loss of life in developing areas of the world and that the Shanghai Government had always paid full attention to this in Chinese waters and supported the development of the IMRF Asia Pacific Rescue Centre (APRC).
Michael Vlasto said he was grateful for the interest and support the Shanghai Municipal Government provided in relation to saving lives in their waters, especially to the Shanghai Urban Construction and Communications Commission and the Shanghai Municipal People's Government.
"I would also like to thank the China Rescue and Salvage Bureau for their tangible support through the establishment of the IMRF APRC in Shanghai. We will work to strengthen our coordination and cooperation, so we can jointly increase the safety of life at sea and reduce the loss of lives in the world's waters," said Michael.
The presentation of the award coincided with Michael Vlasto's visit to Shanghai to complete the formalities of registering the IMRF APRC Shanghai office. The ceremony was held at the Donghai Rescue Bureau and was attended by Captain Song IMRF trustee and APRC Board Chairman, Mr. Wang, Director General, China Rescue and Salvage and officials from Shanghai Urban Construction and Communications Commission, Donghai Rescue Bureau and Shanghai Salvage Bureau.
A total of 53 foreign friends have won "Magnolia Medals" presented by the Shanghai Government in 2013. Over the past 25 years, a total of 909 foreign friends have received the award. The winners have come from 17 countries and include, entrepreneurs engaged in business management, educationalists, industry experts and professors and other people from all walks of life taking part actively in economic, technological and cultural development in Shanghai.