President Rodrigo Duterte is set to inaugurate the completed expansion project at the Puerto Princesa Port in Palawan on Thursday, Nov. 4, the Department of Transportation (DOTr) said.
In a statement, the DOTr said the expansion project, which includes the construction of an additional back-up area, was completed on July 20 despite the pandemic.
“The project was carried out to make the port more productive, particularly its long-haul connection to Metro Manila and planned connectivity to the island of Mindoro via the Port of Bulalacao,” the department said.
For the past five years, the DOTR said that the Puerto Princesa Port underwent several expansions and necessary improvements as it serves as the province’s primary maritime gateway for commerce, trade, and tourism.
Around 1,500 international and local vessels call at Puerto Princesa Port per year while around 200,000 passengers use the port annually, including almost 6,000 cruise-tourism passengers. It also handles approximately 1.7 metric tons of cargoes.
The DOTr said the expansion of the Puerto Princesa Port forms part of the 472 commercial and social-tourism projects completed by the DOTr and the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) nationwide since the Duterte administration took over in 2016, resulting in improved maritime connectivity and mobility in the entire archipelago.
DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade previously inaugurated several completed Palawan port projects in the Port of San Fernando in El Nido, Port of Bataraza in Barangay Buliluyan, and Borac Port in Coron, linking the island province to other parts of the country and nearby countries.
The completed seaport projects, under the massive Build, Build, Build program of the Duterte administration, are expected to generate employment for locals and usher economic and tourism growth as the country recovers from the pandemic.
Duterte will be joined by Tugade, and PPA General Manager Jay Santiago during the inauguration.