Press Release
May 27, 2019

Drilon backs Razon's ICTSI plans to develop Iloilo port into international gateways

Business tycoon Enrique Razon Jr.'s International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI)'s plan to infuse P8.7 billion to develop the Port of Iloilo drew support from Ilonggo Senator Franklin M. Drilon, who is widely credited for Iloilo's exceptional development.

At a briefing attended by Ilonggo political leaders and business groups, represented by the Iloilo Economic Development Foundation (ILED), Mr. Christian Gonzalez, ICTSI's Global Corporate Head, revealed that the Razon-led ICTSI intends to invest P8.7 billion to upgrade the Iloilo Port once the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) acts on its unsolicited proposal which is up for review by the PPA Board.

Present at the briefing held last May 24, 2019 in Makati City were Drilon, Mayor-elect Jerry Trenas, Congresswoman-elect Julienne "Jam Jam" Baronda, and Ilonggos business community represented by Ms. Narzalina Lim, Ms. Jocelyn Perez, Mr. Terence Uygongco, Mr. Rex Drilon and Mr. Francis Gentoral of ILED.

"The expansion of Iloilo port sits well with our plans for the province. This early we are seeing a heightened shipping activity in the province due to the economic developments that have taken place in the province for the past years," Drilon said.

"We have to develop our port and equip it with modern facilities so it can continue to accommodate the growing demands for port services," he added.

Drilon said that the ICTSI's plan is very timely given that Iloilo is poised to become a major exporter of agricultural products once the Jalaur River Multi-purpose Project is completed in 2022. The project will irrigate 31,000 hectares of rice land, doubling the rice production of Iloilo.

The senator then urged the PPA to act on ICTSI's unsolicited proposal.

During the briefing, Gonzalez stated that the objective of ICTSI is to bring the Iloilo Port to world class levels by maximizing big ship capability; installing ship-to-shore gantry cranes; and continuously upgrading yard capacity aligned to traffic studies. It also plans to build a terminal for cruise ship passengers, to meet the objectives of the National Tourism Development Plan.

Gonzalez said that with their development plans, Iloilo can be the major regional transhipment hub for the Visayas.

Additionally, the agri-aqua products of Iloilo can be shipped to domestic and foreign markets in refrigerated containers, driving costs down, making them very competitive.

Gonzalez added, when the traffic limit in the Iloilo port is about to be reached, the port in Dumangas will be developed as originally proposed by Governor Arthur Defensor.

Mayor-elect Trenas stated that he will ensure full cooperation of the city so that the road network to and from the port is upgraded to accommodate the expected traffic.

Local incentives will also be reviewed to make it attractive for exporters and importers to use the port.

ILED Chairperson Narzalina Lim, offered to mobilize all the business associations in Iloilo to throw their support behind the ICTSI proposal and write a letter to PPA to accelerate the process of review and approval of the Original Proponent Status of ICTSI.

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