The Philippine Ports Authority will complete 22 more port projects this year to improve its operational efficiency.
“The PPA remains committed to provide the best service we can,” stressed General Manager Jay Daniel R. Santiago.
The projects include the Pier 18 rehabilitation and upgrade in Vitas, Tondo, Manila; the construction of a port operations building in Abra de Ilog, Occidental Mindoro; the Balanacan Port expansion project in Marinduque; the construction of the RC Pier and Ro-Ro ramp at the Port of Bansud, Oriental Mindoro; the construction of a back-up area at the Port of Bulalacao also in Oriental Mindoro.
The construction of a Ro-Ro ramp and expansion project at the Port of Bulan, Sorsogon and the construction of the Coastal Access Road project at the Port of Calapan, Oriental Mindoro are also included.
By the end of 2020, PPA likewise expects to complete the expansion of the Port of Capinpin, Bataan; the reconstruction of the Carmen Port in San Agustin, Romblon; the Cobo Port construction project in Cobo, Catanduanes.
The agency will also finish the construction of port operations buildings at the ports of Coron, Currimao, Masbate, Mauban, Quezon, and Talaga in Mabini, Batangas.
The port rehabilitation and upgrading of RC wharf at the Port of Legazpi; the port expansion projects in Matnog, Puerto Princesa, Salomague, Ilocos Sur, Tablas, Romblon, and TMO Pasig; and the rehabilitation of the Port of Tabaco, Albay are also targeted for completion by the end of 2020.
However, “We cannot do all of these if we do not take care of our people,” according to the GM. “The employees are the foundation of the success of our agency most especially during this pandemic.”
Hence, PPA provides round-the-clock supply of COVID-19 protective equipment and other essentials to all its ports to protect its employees.
Alternative work platforms are likewise adopted to further reduce the risk. Campaign materials are posted in strategic places to remind its employees on the ‘new normal’ procedures.
PPA seeks to guarantee that ports remain COVID-free in preparation for the ‘new normal’.
Hence, it is implementing measures, such as misting of luggage and cargoes of incoming passengers, mandatory wearing of face masks, mandatory washing of hands before entering any port premises, accomplishment of the PPA entry protocol form for contact tracing, markings relative to physical distancing and the establishment of COVID-19 Testing Facilities in select ports.
PPA is also partnering with other government agencies like the Department of Health in its anti-COVID-19 advocacies by utilizing all available port platforms to help bring the information to the public. PPA is eliminating face-to-face transactions by introducing several online platforms like the unified passenger ticketing system, automated payment scheme and automated cargo payment regime.