Thursday, November 26, 2009

Normin shippers pushes North to South Mindanao link in logistics confab

CAGAYAN Journal (Ben Balce/Nov 26) - The two-day Mindanao logistics conference started Wednesday pushed the Northern to Southern Mindanao link, which would enable greater mobility of goods and people.

“The main focus on this conference is the logistics infrastructure. Linkages of Northern to Southern Mindanao, a main corridor like a Davao-Cagayan expressway,” said Cagayan de Oro 2ndDistrict Congressman Rufus Rodriguez.

Rodriguez who welcomed hundred participants said several infrastructures were expected to be built in key places in Mindanao to fast track it economic development.

Rodriguez said, like the ongoing infra-projects he started in Cagayan de Oro early this year would now be a big help if the plan fully be materialized.

“The ongoing projects like the Laguindingan Airport, the planning of the Mindanao Railway System which will connect the cities of Iligan and Cagayan de Oro is the start idea of a logistics corridor,” said Rodriguez.

In Cagayan de Oro, he said the approval of an overpass to be built in Barangay Puerto worth P230- million will help the land cargoes from Bukidnon to Cagayan de Oro.

“That overpass will help cargoes from Bukidnon as it will be connecting to the new planned coastal super highway from Puerto to Macabalan port," said Rodriguez.

The conference held at the Phividec Industrial Authority in Tagoloan, Misamis Oriental.

The Mindanao Federation of Shippers’ Association (MINFESA) Inc. who spearheaded the conference made some proposal as it will presented during the said conference with the theme: "Southern-Northern Mindanao Logistics Corridor: Key to Fast Track its Economic Development."

MINFESA President Vic Lagdamen in a statement said the "expressway" would not necessarily be the one passing through the current national highway, as long as it will "facilitate for a faster movement of goods and people."

He also said while the Northern-Mindanao link is being pushed as a main corridor, the proposed integrated logistics and transportation plan should also include the Zamboanga, Caraga and other regions in Mindanao.

Mindanao is yet to have an integrated logistics and transportation plan, he said.

He said the plan should figure significantly with the recent infrastructure boost in Mindanao, wherein major infrastructure were recently built like the Mindanao Container Terminal, along with the expansion of seaports and airports, and improvement of national roads.

Business Growth Development program manager Renne P. Subido said that the integrated logistic highway or corridor that would connect two big economic centers in the region the Northern and Southern part of Mindanao is planned by Minfesa in cooperation with some groups like Growth with Equity in Mindanao (GEM).

"The GEM will give some technical assistance and part of the conference' resolution and one of the co-funding groups," said Subido.

The gathered sectoral issues and concerns during consultations in Cagayan de Oro and Zamboanga also presented in the conference.

Lagdamen said they will not only forward the conference resolutions to concerned agencies like the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) but to aspiring presidential candidates saying that "the new administration should already have a buy-in into the idea."

Some international players like foreign shipping industries were attended the 200-strong delegation of shippers, shipping lines, cargo forwarders, service providers, and representatives from private sector and government agencies.

The port director of the Muara Port in Brunei Darussalam is also expected to be one of the conference speakers on today's (Nov 26) conference, which would highlight port and infrastructure development thrust in the Brunei Darussalam-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines East Asean Growth Area (Bimp-Eaga) sub-regional cooperation, Lagdamen said.

"Luzon is ahead of us in planning its own integrated logistics corridor and building expressways, interconnecting its ports and airports. It is high time for Mindanao to plan its own future and face the global challenge," a statement from the conference brochure says.


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1 comment:

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