Port developer and operator Mega Harbour Port and Development Corporation Inc. has expressed optimism on the realization of a “Global Mindanao” as the company is set to implement the PHP39-billion mega harbor project in Davao City.
Mega Harbour Chairman Reghis M. Romero II said the mega harbor project for Davao City is fully aligned with President Rodrigo R. Duterte’s vision of federal system of governance, as the port project, when completed, will serve its inherent role as a major generator of revenues, employment, livelihood, business opportunities and entrepreneurial activities.
“In today’s era, not having the port of that kind could pose a formidable disincentive and a severe bottleneck to the supply chain, and prevent the entire South from optimizing its great economic potential,” Romero said, referring to foregone foreign investments and trade opportunities with vast overseas markets, including agriculture and cruise tourism in an essentially archipelagic country like the Philippines.
“The PHP39-billion mega harbor port development project in Davao City will be the key to filling up that gaping gap,” Romero explained.
With a modern and eco-friendly international port, Romero said that Davao City can help the entire Philippines take advantage of its much-vaunted strategic location in the heart of Southeast Asia and enable this city to bloom in all its glory as the capital of EAGA (East Asia Growth Area).
“Thus, Davao City will then serve as the national model for the rise of similar port across the archipelago,” Romero said, as he hinted his plan to replicate the project in key areas nationwide.
The way to the realization of a “Global Mindanao” will be presented by Mega Harbour in the upcoming 18th Davao Agri Trade Expo 2016 (DATE 2016) that will take place on Sept. 22 to 24 at the SMX Convention Center, SM Lanang Premier in Davao City.
“The company has been on the thick of preparations for its corporate and project presentations to the DATE participants and the members and guests of the Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry Inc.,” Romero said.
Mega Harbour will be the platinum sponsor of the upcoming business gathering.
“The company’s presentation would essentially show the strategic importance of a modern, world-class, master-planned and pro-nature port in opening up any region to international trade, tourism and investments,” Romero added.
The project presentation of Mega Harbour at the DATE 2016 is scheduled on Sept. 23, just before the company will host a lunch for the Davao Chamber’s members and guests and in time with the DATE’s first-ever hosting of agri-marketing conference.
In the same statement, Davao Chamber Executive Director Maan Doromal describes Mega Harbour’s participation in the event as very timely as the focus of this year’s DATE includes exporting.
Expected participants to this year’s 18th DATE will be 10,000 to 12,000 delegates coming from business sector and other stakeholders in Mindanao and other parts of the country.
This year’s numbers are more than double the participants who joined the previous DATE events – from 4,000 in 2011 to 4,856 in 2015.
Doromal said sales for this year’s DATE are also expected to increase, as the event had already proven the surge of its sales to 550 percent – from PHP61.5 million to a whopping PHP342.8 million for the last five years.
“The numbers can grow even further as Mega Harbour takes shape and become operational in the few years ahead,” Romero said.
He also reported that Mega Harbour’s sister firm, the Harbour Centre Port Terminal (HCPT) in Manila had posted phenomenal increase in cargo volume from 3.0 million metric tons to 6.0 million over the past five years.
Romero said that HCPT’s 1.115-km berth will be increased by another kilometer and its 12-hectare apron and storage area will be expanded by an additional 20 hectares through a reclamation project that will be completed in just a year.
“We are prioritizing port development in our menu of infrastructure and environment projects because of its urgency in the wake of the ASEAN economic integration. As a responsible corporate citizen, we have to align our priorities with national interests,” he added.
Romero, in the statement, also hailed Davao Chamber for giving this year’s DATE the theme “Bridging the Gap: Global Opportunities for Mindanao’s Golden Crops,” saying that the same also speaks of Mega Harbour’s purpose and vision. (PNA) SCS/LCM/Alex Lopez/LDP/rsm