Chinese investor eyes Iloilo City as port hub

By Perla Lena

November 10, 2017, 6:38 pm

ILOILO CITY -- A Chinese investor wants to turn Iloilo City into port hub for direct cargo shipment from mainland China.

Iloilo City Mayor Jose Espinosa III on Friday welcomed the new investment, citing the city’s potential.
He said the investor probably saw the volume of business in this city and how it is becoming a “business hub of the country”.
On Tuesday, executives of the SITC Container Lines Philippines Inc., and the Cebu Chinese consulate met with the mayor to discuss the proposed investment.
SITC Container Lines Philippines is the representative of SITC Container Lines Co. based in Shanghai China and is engaged in the operation of its own and chartered vessels carrying container cargoes within major ports in Asia, according to the city government’s public information office (PIO).
Espinosa said that according to some brokers, the investment will result in the reduction in prices of goods sold in this city “by a big percentage”.
The mayor cited that most of the equipment in the city, even the most basic needs, are mostly made in China.
The cost of freight paid by businessmen and direct importers will be reduced, he said.
Currently, goods from China are downloaded to other major ports and shipped to Iloilo via local cargo vessels, incurring a pass-on cost.
The company has already appointed a manager to oversee their operations and hopefully they could start first quarter of 2018, he said.
Espinosa added that Iloilo City’s infrastructure could accommodate them. The company has already checked available facilities at the Iloilo International Container Port and has coordinated with the Bureau of Customs if it is capable of checking containerized cargoes.
He expressed hope that the Chinese consulate would put up an office in this city.
“We’ll make a way to provide them an office,” said Espinosa. (PNA)