Subic-Clark council wants 3 freeport zones declared transshipment hubs

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Clark International Airport. Photo from LIPAD Corp.
  • The Subic-Clark Alliance for Development Council is proposing to declare Clark Freeport Zone, Subic Bay Freeport Zone, and Freeport Area of Bataan as transshipment hubs
  • SCADC Resolution No. 1 approved the endorsement of an executive order to President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. to declare the three freeport zones as transshipment hubs and providing for simplified customs procedures
  • The proposed EO also aims to declare the Subic-Clark Economic Corridor as a transshipment corridor

The Subic-Clark Alliance for Development Council (SCADC) is proposing to declare Clark Freeport Zone, Subic Bay Freeport Zone, and Freeport Area of Bataan as transshipment hubs to accelerate their development as a mega-logistics hub.

SCADC Resolution No. 1 approved on April 22 the endorsement of an executive order (EO) to President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. to declare the three freeport zones as transshipment hubs and providing for simplified customs procedures on the transfer and clearance of goods.

The resolution also authorized SCADC chairman and Transport Secretary Jaime Bautista to represent SCADC to obtain the support and approval of Marcos.

The proposed EO, which is endorsed by the Bureau of Customs (BOC)-SCAD technical working group following several meetings, also aims to declare the Subic-Clark a transshipment corridor.

The EO includes drafting and adoption of an automated unified customs procedure specifically for the sea-air-sea transshipment for exportation purposes between Clark International Airport (CRK) and the ports of Subic and Bataan.

One of the mandates of SCADC is to supervise the development of Clark Freeport Zone, Subic Freeport Zone, and the Subic-Clark corridor into a mega-logistics hub under EO No. 504-A, which defines the powers and functions of the council.

According to the resolution, the declaration will benefit exporters and will allow them to have the option to determine the most efficient mode of transport for their cargo.

The declaration is also seen to hasten the adoption of automated systems and the realization of the development of the nautical highway envisioned in the Philippine Development Plan 2023-2028 and “more economic activities in the corridor can be expected to be developed with such as declaration by the President.”

The resolution said the declaration will position the three freeport zones and corridor as one of the transshipment hubs in Asia that can host cargo to and from many destinations in the world. It added that the EO will provide more economic growth not only in the Subic-Clark area but in the entire country as well.

Bautista last year said CRK should be developed as a transshipment center aided by fixed-based operators capable of supporting international freight operations as well as MRO (maintenance, repair, and operations), and cargo facilities. He noted that CRK’s location “makes it an ideal transshipment hub for efficient movement of international cargo.”

READ: Transport chief pushes Clark International Airport as transhipment hub

The Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority earlier said it is also positioning Subic port as a transshipment hub for brand-new vehicles, aiming to handle at least three shipments every quarter. – Roumina Pablo