Secretary Abaya: The modernization of the century-old Davao Sasa port will bring about more vibrant trade, which will spur economic and social development across Mindanao. Exporters will have more efficient operations and importers will have better logistics. Shipping lines will have quicker turnaround times. Consumers will enjoy a wider range of imported products.
Based on a study conducted for the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) by the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP), no less than a world-class Davao Sasa Port is needed to meet the rapid growth of the country’s export demands over the next few years. “With the Philippines being the 2nd-largest banana exporter in the world, and Davao being the top banana grower in the region, we need to pursue the long-term opportunities which will usher in inclusive growth in the south. Our project will generate jobs, boost the export industry, and drive consumer costs down,” said Abaya. Since bulk of the port’s traffic consists of banana exports, the development of Davao Sasa will benefit large-scale businesses as well as small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), which in turn could generate more job opportunities. In the IFC-DBP study, it was found that Davao Region’s container traffic is projected to increase by at least six percent (6%) annually over the next 25 years, which will amount to three million Twenty-Foot Equivalent Units (TEUs) by 2040. The transport agency’s modernization project for Davao Sasa will be able to boost its capacity to 1.2 million TEUs already upon completion of the infrastructure component in 2020. This will complement both existing and future demand, alongside other major ports in the region, namely the Hijo port and the Davao International Container Terminal. The DOTC’s Davao Sasa Port Modernization Project is the first Public-Private-Partnership (PPP) project for Mindanao. It is currently in the bidding process, with the submission of qualification documents scheduled on July 29. The project involves the expansion and modernization of the existing port which includes the construction of a new quay and the installation of cranes, which will greatly boost efficiency, and thereby address port traffic congestion. For instance, the current manual setup of cargo unloading can take up to three days; but once new cranes are in place, unloading time will be drastically cut down to about 3 hours. The project will be implemented in three (3) construction phases, for completion from 2017 to 2020. Abaya will head to Davao City tomorrow, July 10, to meet with various stakeholders and explain to the public how the project will impact on social and economic growth for the country, and especially for Mindanao. dotc.gov.ph