Olongapo SubicBay BatangGapo Newscenter

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Subic’s massive infrastructure will continue to interest investors

By. Irma Isip – Malaya
The Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) is confident of attracting new investments despite the economic crisis due to massive logistics infrastructure in the Subic Freeport zone.

In his speech at the two-day general assembly of the International Network of Affiliated Ports (INAP) that started Tuesday, SBMA Administrator Armand C. Arreza cited the growing role of sports in the global trade.

Arreza, who is pushing for Subic as an ideal maritime logistics hub, is still optimistic of attaining growth despite economic difficulties.

Arreza said the port of Subic now boasts of the newest operating container port in the country, and it possesses key infrastructure that can support a wide range of businesses.

“With this, Subic now responds to the growing requirements of seaborne trade in Northern and Central Luzon, and is ready for the capacity shortage of 14 million TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent units) projected for South East Asia,” Arreza told conference delegates.

Arreza also said Subic’s new containerterminal-1, which was funded by the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC), has an annual capacity of 300,000 TEUs and equipped with two quay cranes capable of handling even post-Panamax cargo vessels.

He added that the existence of nine other piers and cargo terminals in Subic, the massive logistics support infrastructure now existing in the Subic-Clark growth corridor, as well as the free port’s strategic location in the center of the growing East Asian Region, definitely gives Subic a solid foundation to gain more investments, attract more trade and weather the current economic storm.

‘Compared to 10 years ago, Subic has come a long way,” Arreza said.

Subic Bay Freeport is now home to some 1,100 investor firms that provide jobs more than 85,000 workers.

Arreza said because of the economic crisis today, it is important that INAP focus on its fundamental objectives. These include responding to the needs of the maritime transport industry, while strengthening cooperation among members, exchanging information and technology, and conducting regular interaction among members.

INAP, which was formed in 1998 as a venue for exchanging information and sharing technology and expertise on marine transport and logistics, held its 10th annual conference here as the global economic down turn began affecting major industries, including the maritime sector.

At the conference, INAP installed SBMA chairman Feliciano Salonga as INAP chairman for the year 2008 to 2009.

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