Filipino shipbuilders told to design food carrier cargo ships
Filipino shipbuilders have been challenged by the government to design cargo ships that could ferry food commodities from the different islands to the urban centers.
“I am reiterating my challenge to Filipino shipbuilders to submit their designs and cost estimates before the end of the First Quarter of 2018 so the funding proposal could be included in the 2019 Budget of the Department of Agriculture and the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources,” Agriculture Chief Emmanuel Piñol said.
“This is a test of Filipino ingenuity,” he added.
Piñol said the types of vessels that we need to easily transport food products from the production areas to the market include a “refrigerated” vessel, which could carry fish and other marine products from places like Pag-asa Island, Palawan, Mindoro, Panay, Zamboanga, Tawi-tawi, Sulu, Surigao, Kalamansig, Davao , Batanes, Cagayan Valley and other fishing grounds to Metro Manila.
He also said the country needs a multi-purpose vessel that could load refrigerated vans containing vegetables and meat products, with enough space to accommodate containers with fruits.
“These vessels would very well serve the purpose in the realization of the vision of President Rodrigo Duterte to establish Regional Food Terminals which would consolidate food products from production areas to be brought to the major urban centers for distribution,” Piñol said.
The agri chief even offered to have the government as the operators of the vessels if ever the private companies would think this venture wouldn’t be profitable.
“Government, after all, was established to serve, not earn profit from its operations,” he further said.