TWO missionary routes--Punta Engaño, Lapu-Lapu City to Getafe, Bohol and Poro, Camotes, Cebu to Isabel, Leyte--are among the nine new additions to the Strong Republic Nautical Highway (SRNH) program to bring down the cost of transporting cargoes and passengers.
“These routes will start operation once ship owners or operators can have a Roro (roll-on-roll-off) ramp or Roro pier in areas they have chosen to travel,” said Director Marc Pascua of the Maritime Industry Authority (Marina) 7.
The nine new routes will bring the total to 28 missionary routes in the entire country. When the SRNH and the Roro System were launched during the presidency of Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, there were 19 operational routes.
Arroyo, who was in Argao, Cebu on Monday, June 17, 2019 to visit the Roro port in Taloot, was happy to hear about the development.
During his presentation in the southern town, Pascua said the SRNH and the Roro System have reduced sea travel time, enhanced the accessibility of prime tourist destinations and facilitated the transportation of rolling cargoes anywhere to and from Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao.
As a result, Pascua said, trade and economic activities became more attractive even in areas that were previously considered remote.
Arroyo, for her part, said this SRNH and the Roro System promote countryside development and expansion of industrial production for the domestic and foreign market.
Aside from the two Cebu new missionary routes, the seven other new routes are Calbayog, Samar to Cataingan, Masbate; Cuyo, Palawan to San Jose de Buenavista, Antique; Lipata, Surigao del Norte to Dapa, Siargao Island; Lucena, Quezon to Sta. Cruz, Marinduque; Pantao, Albay to San Pascual, Masbate; San Juan, Batangas to Abra de Ilog, Mindoro Occidental; and Siaton, Negros Oriental to Dipolog City.
The original 19 routes pass Cebu, Bohol, Leyte, Quezon, Romblon, Masbate, Mindoro Occidental, Batangas, Palawan, Negros Oriental, Northern Samar, Camarines Sur, and Cagayan de Oro City.
For Cebu, the SRNH connects Taloot, Argao to Loon, Bohol; Mainit, Oslob to Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental; Maya, Daanbantayan to Calbayog City, Samar; and Tabuelan to Ajuy, Iloilo. (EOB)