Chapter 1

General

Section 1: 

The name of this association shall be “The Association of Honorary Consuls in Hong Kong & Macau SAR (China)中華人民共和國香港、澳門特區名譽領事團” and the abbreviated English name shall be AHC.

Section 2:

The registered office of AHC shall be situated at 19th Floor, Seaview Commercial Building, 21-24 Connaught Road West, Hong Kong.

Section 3:  

The logo appeared below shall be the official logo of AHC. The official language for meetings and business of AHC shall be English and Chinese.

 

Chapter 2

Objectives

Section 4: 

The objectives of AHC are:

  1. To be a professional Association dealing with consular affairs and international affairs.
  2. To bring together Honorary Consuls in The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region(hereinafter called “HKSAR”) and the Macau Special Administrative Region (hereinafter called “Macau SAR”) that represent various countries from all over the world to share experience, and coordinate efforts to enhance the status and effectiveness of the Consul, the oldest institution serving International bilateral relations.
  3. To educate consular officers in consular practice and law and to inform the general public within HK & Macau SAR concerning the nature and importance of performance of consular duties.
  4. To promote and strengthen mutual understanding between Honorary Consuls and Career Consuls in HK SAR and Macau SAR.
  5. To develop a framework and basis for exchange of current information, ideas and suggestions regarding matters related to the office of Honorary Consuls and Career Consuls.
  6. To promote better understanding of the duties and responsibilities, rights and privileges of Honorary Consuls and Career Consuls.
  7. To affiliate with FICAC (Federation Internationale des Corps et Associations Consulares) a global network of Consular Associations to support and improve the status, legitimacy and effectiveness of all consular officers in all receiving States.
  8. To stimulate and expand trade, cultural bonds and tourism.
  9. To provide information about investment opportunities.
  10. To promote peace amongst nations charity works and technological exchange.
  11. To carry on such other activities as may be deemed practicable in furtherance of the objectives of AHC.
Section 5: 

AHC shall abstain from the practice of any discrimination on the grounds of race, gender, color and/or religion.

Section 6:  

AHC shall not engage in any illegal and/or immoral activities.

 

Chapter 3

Members

Section 7: 

Membership of AHC shall consist of the following two (2) classes (In this Charter, Member means Ordinary Member or Associate Member):-

  1. Ordinary membership which shall be open to Honorary Consuls in HKSAR and Macau SAR recognized by the Government of the People’s Republic of China to represent respective foreign countries;
  2. Associate membership which shall be open to:-
    • Honorary Vice-Consuls in HKSAR and Macau SAR recognized by the Government of the People’s Republic of China to represent respective foreign countries;
    • past Honorary Consuls and past Honorary Vice-Consuls in HKSAR and Macau SAR; and
    • Career Consuls in HKSAR and Macau SAR recognized by the Government of the People’s Republic of China to represent respective foreign countries and retired Career Consuls who worked in HKSAR and Macau SAR before retirement.

Section 8:

Every application for membership shall be made in writing signed by the applicant in such form as the Executive Committee shall from time to time prescribe, and the Executive Committee shall have absolute discretion to accept or reject any application without assigning any reason therefor.

 

Chapter 4

Rights of Members

Section 9: 

Ordinary and Associate Members may exercise the right:-

  1. to participate in activities of AHC;
  2. to propose ideas on the conduct of affairs of AHC to the Executive Committee;
  3. to be eligible to the various welfares made available by AHC; and
  4. to receive notice of and attend General Meetings of AHC (provided that Associate Members shall attend as observers only).
Section 10: 

In addition to the rights set out in Section 8 above, Ordinary Members also have the following rights:-

  1. to vote at General Meetings of AHC.
  2. each Ordinary Member shall have one vote at General Meeting.
  3. to elect and be elected as members of the Executive Committee.
  4. to submit written request to examine the Register of Members, Register of Executive Committee, minutes book and audited accounts of AHC
  5. to call Extraordinary General Meetings, such right to be exercised jointly by not less than five (5) Ordinary Members, provided always that all such Members are paid-up Members at the time of making such application.

 

Chapter 5

Duties of Members

Section 11: 

It shall be the duties of all Members as follows:-

  1. To strictly observe the Charter and regulations of AHC.
  2. To pay any fees, including but not limited to entrance fees, annual membership fees and any other fees as may be decided by the Executive Committee from time to time.
  3. To conduct themselves befitting the honor of bring Members of AHC.
  4. To cooperate and support the activities of AHC.
  5. To propagate the good name of AHC to enable it to be widely recognized and respected.
  6. To advise in writing, at the first opportunity, to the Secretary-General of any change of address or place of work.
Section 12:

Members shall pay all admission fees, annual membership fees and any other fees as the Executive Committee may from time to time determine and impose.

 

Chapter 6

Termination of Membership

Section 13:

Membership in AHC shall terminate under the following terms:

  1. Death;
  2. Resignation made in writing;
  3. Bankruptcy or commitment of a criminal offence with a final judgment of imprisonment; or
  4. Termination of service of Ordinary Members by Representing Countries. Nevertheless, such Ordinary Members shall, upon termination, be eligible to apply to become Associate Members.

Section 14:

The Executive Committee may propose expulsion of any Member being charged with engaging in defamatory conducts against AHC or in any conduct the Executive Committee may consider as ground for expulsion. The expulsion will be effected by:-

      1. a resolution passed in a meeting of the Executive Committee convened for the said purpose with two-thirds (2/3) majority of  attending Committee Members; and
      2. the said resolution of the Executive Committee shall be put before an Extraordinary General Meeting convened for the said purpose and confirmed by a resolution with three-fourths (3/4) majority of the Ordinary Members attending in person or by proxy.
Section 16

Any Member who does not maintain current fee payment, even after a request for payment by the Treasurer, shall receive a registered written request for payment within two (2) months from the Treasurer. If the said financial obligation is not forthcoming after that period, the Treasurer shall submit the matter to the Executive Committee’s consideration to terminate membership of the said Member.

 

Chapter 7

Honorary Positions

Section 17

The Executive Committee may invite eminent persons to be Patrons of AHC for a term of three (3) years. Such appointment shall be made by a resolution with two-thirds (2/3) majority of the Executive Committee.

Patron shall have the right to participate in any meeting or function of AHC and to advise AHC on any matter as the Patron thinks fit.

Section 18:  

The Executive Committee may invite eminent persons to honor AHC by holding honorary positions such as Honorary Advisor for a term of three (3) years. Such appointment shall be made by a resolution with two-thirds (2/3) majority of the Executive Committee.

Immediate Past Chairpersons shall automatically be appointed as Honorary Chairpersons without executive powers. However, any other appointed post held by such persons will bear all associated executive powers.

 

Chapter 8

Preparatory Committee

Section 19:  

The Preparatory Committee of AHC shall consist of the following persons, namely:-

Henry H.K. CHAN, Chairman;
Peter LEE, Vice-Chairman;
Irene M. JIANG, Vice-Chairman;
Johnny S.H. HON, Secretary General; and
Andrew C.C. MA, Treasurer.

Section 20:  

The Preparatory Committee shall be responsible for the formation of AHC and all affairs relating thereto.

 

Chapter 9

Executive Committee

Section 21:

AHC shall be governed by an Executive Committee (“the Executive Committee”). The Executive Committee shall be made up of not more than twelve (12) Members (“the Committee Members”) including at least eight (8) Members from HKSAR and at least two (2) Members from Macau SAR.

For the purpose of this Section and Section 29, any Member who is an Honorary Consul in both HKSAR and Macau SAR shall declare in writing to the Executive Committee whether he/she will be treated as Member of HKSAR or Macau SAR for the purpose of election.

Section 22:  

The first Executive Committee shall be elected during the inaugural general meeting, to be called by the Preparatory Committee within sixty (60) days from the date of registration of AHC as a society. The members of the first Executive Committee shall stay in office for a term expiring on the closing of the second Annual General Meeting and all retiring members of the first Executive Committee shall be eligible for re-election.

Section 23:  

Save and except the first Executive Committee, the Executive Committee shall be elected at the Annual General Meeting. The members of the Executive Committee shall stay in office for a term of two (2) years and all retiring Committee Members shall be eligible for re-election.

Section 24:  

In the event that there is any vacancy in the Executive Committee, the Ordinary Members may by ordinary resolution appoint another qualified person to fill the vacancy. In respect of the date of retirement of the qualified person who fills the vacancy, it is deemed that such qualified person is appointed as if he/she was appointed at the date his/her predecessor was elected.

Section 25

The office of a member of the Executive Committee shall be vacated:

  1. upon completion of the term;
  2. if the Committee Member resigns his/her office by notice in writing to AHC which has been approved by the Executive Committee;
  3. upon resolution of the General Meeting with a vote of not less than three-fourths (3/4) of all Ordinary Members present in person or by proxy to remove the Committee Member from his/her post;
  4. if the Committee Member becomes of unsound mind; or
  5. if the Committee Member is being terminated as a member of AHC.
Section 26:  

The Executive Committee shall convene meeting(s) (“Committee Meeting”) from time to time as it deems think fit.

Section 27:  

The Executive Committee is empowered to:

  1. conduct AHC’s affairs by implementing the Charter or the regulations prescribed by the Executive Committee;
  2. adopt and implement the resolutions of the General Meeting; and
  3. establish regulations for conducting AHC’s affairs.

 

Chapter 10

Change of the numbers of the Executive Committee

Section 28:

Subject to Section 21, the number of the Executive Committee Members may be increased or decreased by resolution at an Extraordinary General Meeting with a vote of not less than two-thirds (2/3) of the Ordinary Members attending the meeting in person or by proxy.

 

Chapter 11

Officers

 

Section 29:  

Within twenty-one (21) days after (a) the first Executive Committee election pursuant to Section 22, or (b) all subsequent Executive Committee election pursuant to Section 23, the Executive Committee shall convene a Committee Meeting to elect five (5) officers, namely a Chairperson, two (2) Vice-Chairpersons, a Secretary-General and a Treasurer. This shall be done by secret ballot of Committee Members present in person or by proxies of Committee Members, and/or any other procedures to be determined by the Executive Committee. In the case of a tie, there shall be a re-election for the candidates who have obtained the highest tie-votes. If there is still no majority vote, this shall be determined by drawing of lot.

  1. Committee Members who cannot be present at the election shall have the right to be elected as the officers of AHC only if they have submitted a written document confirming their acceptance to be the officer of AHC upon being appointed.
  2. The Executive Committee shall first elect a Committee Member to be the Chairperson.
  3. The Executive Committee shall then elect one (1) HKSAR Committee Member and one (1) Macau SAR Committee Member to be the Vice-Chairpersons.
  4. Finally, the Executive Committee shall elect two (2) Committee Members (among the remaining Committee Members) to be the Secretary-General and the Treasurer.
Section 30:

An officer shall not hold his/her position as an officer consecutively for more than two (2) terms (4 years). Nevertheless, upon stepping down as an officer after serving two (2) terms (4 years), he/she shall be eligible for re-election as an officer after a lapse of two (2) years.

Section 31:  

An officer who wishes to vacate his/her position as an officer of the Executive Committee for any reason shall give at least one (1) month’s written notice to the Executive Committee.  The Executive Committee shall, during such one-month notice period, convene a Committee Meeting with twenty-one (21) days’ notice to the Committee Members to elect a replacement to the vacated officer.

 

Chapter 12

General Meetings

Section 32:

General Meetings shall be divided into two (2) categories:

  1. Annual General Meetings, which shall be convened within three (3) months from the end of each accounting year every year.
  2. Extraordinary General Meetings, which shall be convened whenever the Executive Committee thinks fit or upon request in writing by Members as prescribed in Section 10(5) above.
Section 33:  

General Meetings other than Annual General Meetings shall be called Extraordinary General Meetings.

Section 34:

All General Meetings shall be called by at least twenty-one (21) days’ notice in writing. The notice shall be exclusive of the day on which it is served or deemed to be served, and of the day for which it is given.

Section 35:

Not less than 10 Ordinary Members attend in person or by proxy shall constitute a quorum in a General Meeting of AHC.

An Ordinary Member is entitled to appoint such other Ordinary Member or Associate Member as proxy to attend the meeting and to vote for him/her.

Section 36:  

Motions of the General Meeting shall be determined if more than half of the Ordinary Members exercise their rights to second it. If a tie occurs, the Chairperson shall cast the deciding vote.

Section 37:  

Proceedings at Annual General Meetings:

  1. To adopt the Minutes of the previous General Meeting.
  2. To consider the Executive Committee’s report on the conduct of AHC’s affairs in the preceding year.
  3. To consider and approve the financial statements of AHC.
  4. Upon the completion of each two (2) year term of office, to elect members of Executive Committee for the commencing new two (2) year term.
  5. To elect Honorary Auditors for each year or, if necessary, to appoint external auditors and fix their remuneration.

 

Chapter 13

Financing of AHC

Section 38:  

All sums of money received by AHC shall be deposited in banks or invested in accordance with the criteria and methods directed by the Executive Committee.

All cheques or financial instruments of AHC shall be issued and duly executed in accordance with the criteria and methods directed by the Executive Committee.

Expenditures of AHC under the objectives prescribed in the Charter shall be in accordance with the resolution of the Executive Committee’s meetings. The Executive Committee may establish regulations on budgetary expenditure to be observed by its personnel.

Section 39:  

The power and duties of the Treasurer.

The Treasurer shall supervise and properly maintain the accounts on incomes and expenditures, documents of the said accounts as well as accounts of assets and liabilities and other accounts, as deemed necessary to show the true and correct financial status of AHC, and shall ensure that the same be kept in good order for examination by the auditors and as evidence.

The Treasurer shall have the power to keep cash at any given time, but not more than the amount as determined by the Executive Committee.

Section 40:  

The Executive Committee shall have the financial statements prepared once a year, which shall be submitted to an auditor for examination not later than January of each year. The auditor shall finish the examination before the Annual General Meeting.

Section 41

The 31st day of March of each calendar year shall be considered the last day of AHC’s accounting year.

Section 42

The Executive Committee shall send a copy of AHC’s financial statements duly examined by the auditor as well as an annual report on its conduct of affairs in the preceding year to all Members not less than twenty-one (21) days before the Annual General Meeting.

Section 43:  

Power of the auditor.

The auditor shall have access to the accounts and documents pertaining to the financial position of AHC, and shall be entitled to make inquiries concerning the accounts and documents to any and all Committee Members and officers of AHC.

 

Chapter 14

Miscellaneous

 

Section 44:

Adoption of an amendment, deletion or addition to this Charter shall require the affirmation votes of not less than two-thirds (2/3) of the Ordinary Members attending the General Meeting in person or by proxy.

Proposed amendments must be submitted to Members for their consideration for a period not less than twenty-one (21) days before a General Meeting.

Section 45:  

AHC may be wound up on any of the following grounds:

  1. by resolution of the General Meeting with a vote of not less than three-fourths (3/4) of the Ordinary Members attending the meeting in person or by proxy.
  2. by order of the Court.
Section 46:  

If, upon the winding up of AHC, there remains, after the satisfaction of all its debts and liabilities, any property whatsoever, the same shall be donated to one or more recognized or approved charitable establishments as may be selected by resolution of a General Meeting with a vote of not less than three-fourths (3/4) of all Ordinary Members present in person or by proxy.

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