The Iloilo City Government is looking at the economic impact of the impending modernization of the Iloilo Commercial Port Complex (ICPC) in Lapuz district.

“The improvement of our port facilities will pave the way for more international container ship arrivals. It will also have a significant impact on the economic growth of the city and the region,” Iloilo City Mayor Jerry Treñas said in a statement on Tuesday, Jan. 30.

As chair of the Infrastructure Development Committee (IDC) of the Regional Development Council (RDC)-6 (Western Visayas), Treñas has been calling for the redevelopment of the port complex into a modern, efficient and premier gateway not only for Iloilo but the whole of Western Visayas.

The Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) announced on Monday, Jan. 29, the notice of award (NOA) to the International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI) to develop and manage the ICPC with a total project cost of over P10.5 billion.

The PPA said that following the issuance of the notice of award, the Office of the Government Corporate Counsel will review the contract before the signing and execution and the issuance of the notice to proceed.

“Although notice to proceed is still to be issued, under the contract, ICTSI must remit 20 percent of annual gross revenues to PPA for the first five years, following a fixed concession fee on the sixth to 10th year, followed by incremental increases based on the consumer price index every three years from the 11th to the 25th year,” it said.

After its handover to the ICTSI, the facility will be named Visayas Container Terminal (VCT).

“Upon signing of the contract, ICTSI will focus on improving terminal productivity and service quality by investing in the development and rehabilitation of the terminal infrastructure and the deployment of cargo-handling equipment,” the ICTSI statement said.

The facility has 627 meters of operational quay length and 20 hectares of land for container and general cargo storage, warehousing and other cargo-handling activities, it added.

“We are elated and grateful to be entrusted with the redevelopment of the Iloilo Port. We recognize the port’s pivotal role in driving Iloilo’s economic and social growth. Our comprehensive proposal outlines significant investments in infrastructure upgrades, cargo-handling equipment, and operational efficiency measures, all aimed at transforming the Iloilo Port into a premier gateway,” ICTSI executive vice president Christian Gonzalez said.Perla Lena/PNA