The Asia Pacific Superyacht Association (APSA) is planning an active 2017 with a mix of some in-house rebranding, a new membership and fee structure, and plans to “aggressively promote” members.

The initiatives are under APSA’s recently appointed new chairman, Nigel Beatty, president and founder of Superyacht Logistics Ltd, who took over from Colin Dawson after seven years.

Beatty comments: “Building on Colin’s foundation, we have now set APSA on a new course to aggressively promote our members with some in-house rebranding to create a new modern and fresh feel, a new membership and fee structure to make it easier for companies to join APSA as an individual entity rather than a global company, as well as extending voting rights to worldwide members, not just Asia-based members.”

A new category of membership has been established as ‘Yacht’ members, where individual yachts or captains can join the association for free and will have access to the services and details of all our members. “With all of this in mind,” Beatty adds, “we are working in-house on a brand-new website that will encompass all the above.”

Among recent new members are Yachting Partners International, SGRM – International Insurance Brokers, and Hawk Yachts. In addition, 10 new ‘Yacht’ members have joined.

Beatty remarks: “While companies are in place in most Asian nations to provide service to visiting yachts, often the regulations are somewhat behind. But this is changing fast and as a direct result of collaborations formed within APSA, we are seeing changes as our members heavily lobby their local and national governments so that they see the financial impact of smart regulations changes for yachts.

“In Hong Kong we are seeing high-level discussions between the Marine Department and members Expat Marine Insurance, Lodestone Yachts, Anglo-Eastern Ship Management, Camper & Nicholson Marinas, Benetti Asia, and two private superyacht owners,” he adds. The aim of these talks is to relax the rules for visiting superyachts and their crews.

In Japan as well, high-level discussions are underway between regional and national governments and APSA members Super Yacht Logistics and the Japan Super Yacht Association. These aim to allow foreign superyachts a cruising permit and unrestricted cruising throughout Japan.

In Indonesia, as a direct result of feedback from the experiences of cruising yachts, APSA member The Lighthouse Consultancy has played a leading part in a concerted effort by the Indonesian superyacht sector. “This effort,” Beatty comments, “has resulted in a change in aviation regulations for the operation of internationally registered aircraft within Indonesian airspace, plus new regulations implemented to streamline the cruising permit application for visiting yachts. We are seeing this pattern repeated across the region and APSA has often indirectly been the catalyst for these successes.”