CARGO throughput at the Mindanao Container Terminal (MCT) in Misamis Oriental, southern Philippines, declined 1.84% to 17,000 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) in June from 17,318 TEUs year-on-year, but a port official said the terminal is recovering and healthy after the region was hit by calamities in 2011.
The storms and floods that devastated Northern Mindanao plantations and industries late in 2011 left their impact on MCT’s first-half cargo throughput, which dropped 2.94% to 104,913 TEUs from 108,090 TEUs in the comparable period last year.
The MCT, located in Tagaloan, Misamis Oriental, is “recovering,” Phividec Industrial Agency (PIA) ports department manager Dante F. Clarito said in an interview with PortCalls. He said throughput should start to peak at the end of the second quarter and remain at high levels until the fourth quarter.
PIA regulates MCT, which is operated by Mindanao International Container Terminal Services Inc., a subsidiary of International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI). ICTSI won the concession for MCT from PIA in April 2008.
The majority of cargoes shipped through the terminal come from regular clients Nestlé Philippines, Del Monte Philippines and Pilipinas Kao Inc.
Clarito said MCT sees a balance of import and export shipments. Nestlé, he noted, mostly brings in imports and does domestic shipments, while Del Monte exports its products.
Regular international port callers are APL, Maersk Line Philippines, MCC Transport Philippines and, for local carriers, NMC Container Lines and Lorenzo Shipping Co.
Expansion in the works
“We are planning to expand in the next two years,” Clarito said, adding that discussions are still ongoing.
MCT has a capacity of 270,000 TEUs a year. Last year it handled 215,274 TEUs or equivalent to an almost 80% utilization rate.
The port manager said ongoing projects within PIA’s industrial zone will boost future throughput.
This year, FDC Misamis Power Corp., a unit of Filinvest Development Corp., is investing P30 billion to put up a 405-megawatt thermal power plant at the industrial estate. Clarito said equipment needed for the project can be shipped through MCT.
Also, the Korea International Cooperation Agency has tied up with the Department of Energy and Natural Resources in granting Philippine Forest Corp. US$3.4 million financing to manufacture wood pellets in Northern Mindanao.
“Later on, this product will be exported using MCT,” Clarito said, adding that the pellets will be shipped to Korean power plants, further adding to MCT’s volume.
Photo from www.ictsi.com