ZAMBOANGA CITY (MindaNews/30 Sept) – The Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) has commissioned the Science and Vision consulting firm to undertake a feasibility study in preparation for the rehabilitation of the port of Jolo, the capital town of Sulu province.
In a statement emailed Thursday, Jameson Lee, principal engineer of the PPA Port District Office-Southern Mindanao (PPA-PDO-SOMIN), said the study will focus on how to maximize the port based on the socio-economic profile of the province.
Science and Vision head consultant engineer Malou Mamatad said the feasibility study will include tourism, international standards, local economic development, port management and other concerns. It will have a time frame of approximately six months, she said.
The Science and Vision consulting firm was also the one commissioned by PPA to conduct feasibility study for the ports of Davao and Zamboanga.
The major agricultural crops of Sulu, being an agriculture-based economy, are coconut, cassava, abaca, coffee, and exotic fruits like durian, lanzones, mangosteen and marang.
The province of Sulu is also a major supplier of seaweeds since all its municipalities, except Jolo, are engaged in seaweed farming.
Fishing is also important industry of the province since the Sulu Sea is one of the richest fishing grounds in the Philippines.
Sulu Gov. Abdusakur Tan said he is pushing for the rehabilitation of the Jolo port since it serves as a gateway for economic development of the province.
“To have an updated port facility is of great importance, a vital component of sustainable economic growth,” Tan added.
He said the port of Jolo was extended by 78 meters in 2000 during the time of then President Joseph Ejercito Estrada.
He said the extension project costing P54 million include the construction of roll-on roll-off docking area and installation of lighting facilities.
The rehabilitation of Jolo port is a joint initiative to Tan and Sulu first district Rep. Habib Tupay Loong. (MindaNews)