MARCH 28, 2017, MANILA—The Port of Manila jumps two notches higher to number 36 in the raking of the top 100 Container Ports, according to a report released by Lloyd’s List and Containerization International for 2016.
The report showed that the Philippines was able to increase their ranking after the country was shielded from the slowdown in China that has hurt other emerging nations in 2015, as government stepped up efforts to unlock bottlenects in state spending and entice investment.
It added that the growth in the country’s Gross Domestic Product exceeded expectations anchored on the 6.1% pace posted in the third quarter for the period in review. Philippine GDP in the three months through to December for the period increased 6.3%. Manila’s economy, for the whole of the period, grew 5.8%.
“Port of Manila registered a 4.3% hike in container throughput, with principal facility the Manila International Container Terminal (MICT) posting a 4.4% increase in containers handled,” the report showed.
Among the reasons that Manila posted the favorable growth include the inauguration of Berth 7 at the MICT, which included the commissioning of four rubber-tyred gantries as well as the rollout of the terminal appointment booking system (TABS) ahead of the anticipated increase in container movements prior to the Christmas holiday season as well as the revival of ICTSI’s inland container depot in Laguna.
TABS is an electronic platform for booking containers in the two international ports of Manila. The system was developed in response to restrictive road policies that were introduced to combat heave congestion of Manila ports in 2014 as a result of the truck ban imposed by the Manila City Government.
Philippine container volume, meanwhile, for the entire 2016 posted positive figures rising 12% to 6.574 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) from 5.861 million TEUs handled in 2015. Foreign containers inch-up 14.11% to 3.973 million TEUs while domestic boxes rose 9.28% to 2.6 million TEUs for the period in review. Total import boxes is at 2.005 million TEUs while Export containers is at 1.968 million TEUs wherein both posted increases of 15.4% and 12.8%, respectively.
Among the ports, which registered strong performance, include the Manila International Container Terminal and Manila South Harbor for international cargoes, North Harbor for domestic cargoes as well as Cagayan de Oro, Davao, and Iloilo.
However, despite the banner year, the PPA is overhauling its growth forecast for this year due to vital developments over the past two months.
PPA General Manager Jay Daniel Santiago explained that the tapered expectation is attributable to the continuing volatility of the Philippine currency as well as the expected drop in the operation of the mining industry in the Philippines.
Among the hard-hit areas by the issues clouting the Philippine mining industry include the ports under the Port Management Offices of Surigao, Nasipit, Palawan, Batangas, Manila, Northern Luzon, among others. These ports handle the bulk of the shipments from the mining firms like nickel, manganese, smelted copper, and refined copper including pumice, marble, silica sand as well as iron ore, chromium, silver, and Zinc.
In Surigao alone, it broke past a half billion in annual revenues for the first time in more than three decades anchored on the increased volume in the exportation of mineral products at private mining ports, along with longer port stays and increased vessel frequency.