COUNCIL AGREED to extend the subscription discount scheme for overseas members by offering a 20% reduction from 1999 onwards to those in countries with a gross domestic product of less than $4,000 per capita.
This decision will lessen some of the effects of currency devaluation for 1,000 members in Malaysia, 850 in South Africa, 120 in Thailand and 240 members spread through 11 other countries.
Introducing the proposal, ICE President Sir Alan Cockshaw, just returned from South East Asia, said: 'We were approached with great humility by a number of people in Malaysia.' He was asked if something could be done to ease their problems with subscriptions.
'The goodwill towards this Institution is a joy to see and it would be nice to think that we could find a way in the short term to mitigate local members' positions, but not for the expatriates. I think we should seek to make a modest reduction.'
Director General & Secretary Roger Dobson outlined the existing scheme, running for eight years, which offers reduced membership fees for engineers in countries with the lowest GDPs. This gives a 90% reduction in subscription for countries with a GDP per capita of less than $400; 80% for $400-$600; 70% for $600-$800; 60% for $800-$1,500; and 50% for $1,500-$2,500. He said: 'A large number of engineers who could claim a reduction don't.'
Council was told that extending the discount scheme was likely to bring in members who would not otherwise join the ICE and give an overall reduction of income of only about £32,000.