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Home Maritime New RCL service linking Mindanao with Asia, Middle East starts

New RCL service linking Mindanao with Asia, Middle East starts

  • Regional Container Lines (RCL) made its maiden port call at Mindanao Container Terminal on December 19, 2020 to connect the Misamis Oriental port, as well as Cebu, to Asia and the Middle East via Singapore
  • The service is operated by two vessels and covers the Singapore-Cebu–Cagayan de Oro (MCT)-Singapore route
  • With new investments in equipment and facilities and the RCL’s new service, MCT projects a 7% growth in 2021

International shipping line and feeder operator Regional Container Lines (RCL) has started a fixed-day weekly service at Mindanao Container Terminal (MCT) that connects the Misamis Oriental port and Cebu to the rest of Asia and the Middle East via Singapore.

RCL’s South Philippines 6 (RSP6) made its first port call at MCT on December 19, 2020 with the 628-TEU (twenty-foot equivalent unit) MV Pira Bhum. The service was launched in the Philippines through RCL’s Southern Philippine agent Eagle Express Lines.

READ: New RCL service links Vis-Min to Asia, ME via Singapore

The service is operated by two vessels and covers the Singapore-Cebu-Cagayan de Oro (MCT)-Singapore route.

The vessels turn in Singapore, which serves as a transshipment hub and provides connections from Cebu, Cagayan de Oro, and Zamboanga to other Southeast Asian markets, the Indian subcontinent and the Middle East, while also serving the markets further north such as China and South Korea.

MCT general manager Roberto Locsin said the regular service calls can be considered as a product superhighway that will help farmers, manufacturers, and other producers in the Philippines to deliver time-sensitive commodities fast and in-bulk without the huge cost.

“Now more than ever, local businesses need help to bounce back, and the new service line will undoubtedly give them the boost they need,” Locsin said.

PHIVIDEC Industrial Authority administrator and chief executive officer (CEO) Jose Gabriel La Viña said the new service strengthens the position of the City of Cagayan de Oro and the rest of Misamis Oriental as a major agro-industrial exporter.

“The availability of a regular and predictable service to a major international hub also presents opportunities for entrepreneurs and industries to move up the value chain.  This could only mean higher incomes, more jobs, and a more comfortable life for our people,” he said. MCT is located inside PHIVIDEC’s industrial estate in Tagaloan, Misamis Oriental.

Eagle Express Group chairman and CEO Angelito Colona, meanwhile, sees the new service as a bright opportunity for the country, while Eagle Express Lines general manager Marlon Isah de Guzman described it as “a game-changer” for the industry.

RCL is a Thai-based shipping line that owns and operates 46 container vessels covering more than 66 destinations in Asia, India, India subcontinent and the Middle East. The company has been operating in the Philippines for 32 years.

In 2020, MCT expanded its port equipment fleet, extended the berth length through the installation of an inland bollard and dolphin moor, and opened a 4.5-hectare empty container depot inside the terminal.

With these investments and the presence of RCL’s new service, MCT projects a 7% growth in 2021 which it noted is a “highly significant target considering the global economy is still recovering from the pandemic.”

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