Information published on 16 May 2017 in the UIC electronic newsletter "UIC eNews" Nr 548.

Finland: International praise for the Finnish Hydrographic Office – Mr Juha Korhonen of the Finnish Transport Agency awarded in Monaco

On 2 May, Senior Engineer Juha Korhonen, recently retired from the Finnish Transport Agency, was awarded the Prince Albert 1st Medal for Hydrography at the IHO (International Hydrographic Organization) conference in recognition of his active involvement in international hydrographic activities, such as the development of standards and regional cooperation. Prince Albert II of Monaco presented the medal to Juha Korhonen.

Juha Korhonen received the award for his significant role in the first ENC/ECDIS testing programmes, as well as for his decades-long participation in various IHO committees and working groups. Korhonen was also awarded for his contribution to the development and standardisation of hydrographic products and services in the Baltic Sea region.

“Finland, and especially Juha, has been the driving force of development in international hydrography forums”, says Korhonen’s former superior, National Hydrographer Rainer Mustaniemi, Head of Unit at the Finnish Transport Agency.

“Thanks to Juha, the outstanding cooperation in the Baltic Sea region now serves as an example to other countries. Even though the medal was awarded to Juha, it was recognition of the work of the entire Finnish Hydrographic Office”, says Mustaniemi.

Korhonen’s career working with nautical charts and hydrographic surveys spanned from 1975 at the Finnish Maritime Administration to his recent retirement from the Finnish Transport Agency. In addition to developing the cooperation in the Baltic Sea region, Korhonen has also played an important role in the development of electronic navigation charts.

Korhonen was nominated for the award by Sweden and Finland. The award was granted by a jury consisting of the IHO’s secretary general and directors. In a future the award is granted every three years to an individual who has contributed significantly to development in the field of hydrography and international cooperation.

What is hydrography? And what does the IHO do?

The task of the Hydrographic Office is to collect, manage and update the hydrographic data and related services required to ensure safe navigation. The Hydrographic Office also makes certain that nautical charts and maritime publications are as standardised as possible and comply with international recommendations. Updated hydrographic and navigational information must be available worldwide, and the information must be reliable and unambiguous. The Hydrographic Office at the Finnish Transport Agency ensures that Finland meets these obligations.

IHO, together with its member states, ensures that all the world’s seas, oceans and navigable waters are adequately surveyed and charted. The mission of the IHO is to create a global environment in which states provide adequate and timely hydrographic data, products and services, and ensure their widest possible use.

(Source: FTA)