Home » Exclusives, Maritime, Ports/Terminals » 2 jetties under construction to support Boracay’s rehab

The Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) is developing two jetties in Boracay to support maintenance of the rehabilitated island that was recently opened to tourist activities after being closed for six months.

PPA general manager Atty. Jay Daniel Santiago, in a chance interview with PortCalls on October 28, said PPA is putting up a jetty in Cagban to handle cargoes from the mainland, and another dedicated for barging wastes out of Boracay.

Santiago said PPA has already constructed the jetty where small boats can dock and discharge cargoes. He noted that previously, cargoes were unloaded on the beach.

Santiago said PPA has suggested to the local government to dedicate the jetty for wastes so Boracay will no longer become a dumpsite and proper handling of wastes can be done outside of the island and in the mainland.

After saying earlier that the famous tourist destination had become a “cesspool,” President Rodrigo Duterte had ordered the island getaway closed off to tourist activities to pave the way for its rehabilitation. Boracay reopened last October 26.

The PPA chief noted that these jetties, each costing around P100 million, are the port authority’s contribution to the rehabilitation and maintenance of Boracay.

Also in connection with Boracay’s operations, PPA is looking at developing Caticlan port primarily as a passenger and roll-on/roll-off terminal, while cargoes will be redirected to Buruanga port, some eight kilometers away from Malay, Aklan.

At the same time, Santiago said PPA is looking to develop a jetty port in Dumaguit near Kalibo “so that we can provide a viable sea transport alternative for those coming into Kalibo going towards Boracay.”

Premium ferry service provider Mabuhay Maritime Express, Inc., a subsidiary of flag carrier Philippine Airlines, earlier said it would build its own jetty port in Kalibo 10 minutes away from the airport, where free shuttles are available for Boracay-bound passengers.

Santiago said, however, that PPA has not yet received the proposal on the construction of a jetty port in Kalibo, and wished that the ferry operator would just utilize the Dumaguit port “so there will be no duplication” of ports in the area.

Aside from ports in Aklan, PPA also has two ongoing developments in Siargao, Surigao del Norte in Mindanao—one cargo port and one cruise port—to support the flourishing tourism on the island. PPA is also currently developing a 3,000-capacity passenger terminal building (PTB) at Cagayan de Oro port that is seen to be finished by the first quarter of next year. Santiago said the PTB is to support the movement of passengers to and from Northern Mindanao.

Recently, PPA also finished refurbishing the PTB of Sasa Wharf in Davao in time for the launching of 2Go’s Manila-Mindanao passenger service.

Santiago noted that marine transportation is a “very viable option” for passengers—both domestic and foreign—going to tourists destinations, especially in far-flung areas in the country.

PPA in an earlier statement said passenger volume in the first seven months of 2018 continued to expand, increasing 6.63% to 47.592 million passengers versus 44.631 million passengers in the same period in 2017, driven primarily by the continued reliance of the sea-traveling public on roll-on/roll-off vessels, fastcraft, and motorized bancas as primary modes of transportation for domestic inter-island travel. – Roumina Pablo

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