Home » Ports/Terminals » Batangas Port privatization in Oct

THE Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) plans to restart privatization of Batangas Port once new cargo-handling equipment is in place by October.

In an interview, PPA general manager Atty. Oscar Sevilla explained that the added cargo-handling muscle will boost the port’s allure to potential bidders.

He added that those that have pre-qualified prior to the suspension of the bidding process will still have the same status once privatization process resumes.

“By October, we expect the delivery and installation of new cranes and other cargo-handling equipment from China which we think will lure more investors to take a second look at the port,” Sevilla said.

In June, the PPA delayed bidding for Batangas Port pending completion of some provisions vital to the process.

At least two firms, International Container Terminal Services, Inc. and Asian Terminals, Inc. (ATI), have been declared eligible to bid for the management and operation of Batangas port’s international terminal.

PPA wants at least seven firms to join the bidding.

According to the amended terms of reference for the privatization, PPA will require information on the nationality of shareholders who own more than 5% of the firm; and proof of capability through the submission of international magazines or port authority certification as well as a list of equipment and gears deployed in all terminals.

The PPA earlier admitted having difficulty fine tuning the privatization’s terms of reference with government having no historical figures to base its provisions on. Cargo volume at Batangas terminal has been very little due to the lack of equipment.

Phase II of Batangas Port, which was funded by a Japan Bank for International Cooperation loan, consists of dredging and reclamation, construction of two foreign container cargo berths, and reconstruction of the general cargo berth in Phase 1 with provision for stacking yard, container freight station, terminal building, utilities, access road, and other support facilities.

Phase I, mainly geared for domestic operations, began in 1992 and was comple-ted in 1997. Costing about P1.21 billion, it included ferry, roll-on roll-off, and general cargo services. ATI holds the contract for Phase I.

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