Tuesday, March 08, 2005

US$215 MLN Development For Subic Bay Freeport

SUBIC, March 8 Asia Pulse - The Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) is targeting 2007 to complete its US$215 million short-term development plan for its port facilities.

There are stages of development - phase 1 and phase 2.

Phase I involves the construction of a 280-meter berth, and installation of new gantry cranes with total handling capacity of 300,000 tons of equivalent units (TEUs) per year.

In Phase II, another berth measuring 280 meters will be constructed and two additional gantry cranes will be installed.

With all four operational gantry cranes, each capable of handling 150,000 TEUs, the total handling capacity can reach up to 600,000 TEUs per year.

The third phase is covered in the long-term development plan that will be sustained up to year 2020.

Financing this phase of the said project will largely depend on the need and actual volume generated in the future.

The project entails the construction of a new container terminal at the Cubi Point areas with a berth length of 560 meter and a berth of 13 meter.

Currently, only one gantry crane is installed at Sattler Pier and is operational. The crane is capable of handling 100,000 TEUs per annum.

It can also hold a maximum capacity of 30 metric tons and could lift 30 containers per hour or an average of one container for every two minutes.

Two port terminals have likewise been built and are now operational the Fertilizer Bulk Terminal at the Boton Wharf and the Grain Bulk Terminal at the Leyte Wharf.

Subic Bay Freeport Development Project, a flagship of the National government, was conceived after years of study by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) on the possibility of constructing an international container terminal on the former US Naval facility.

Felicito Payumo then chairman of SBMA and Hiroshi Yasuda, governor of the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC), signed a loan agreement for the project on August 31, 2000.

At present, Subic Bay Freeport has a total of 15 operational piers and wharves servicing different kinds of seas vessels from small crafts, commercial yachts and ferry boats to container vessels, cargo ships oil tankers and aircraft carriers.

The port facilities were recently augmented with the assistance of the private sector, pending the actual implementation of the Port Development Project.

The current interim terminal operation at the NDS is a joint venture agreement among the SBMA and port operators International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI) and Royal Port Services, Inc. (RPSI).

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