The Philippine government seeks
to boost the fleet of RoRo vessels to cover unserved routes throughout the country, according to the Maritime Industry Authority
, head of Marina’s Shipping Regulation Office,said that 30 RoRo ships are needed for unserviced routes nationwide.
Each RoRo with a capacity of 500 gross tons costs $4 to $6m.
Lorenzo said the additional RoRo vessels would improve the country’s cargo industry and strengthen the Central and Eastern Nautical Highways.
Under the program, the government wants a RoRo port system to link the country’s islands.
Another trigger for increased demand in new vessels is the April 2008 deadline for the phase-out of black cargo tankers plying Philippine waters. Each vessel, carrying 2,500 to 3,750 dead-weight tons, is priced at around $10m to $15m.
Lorenzo said that local shipyards have no technology to build such vessels, but many are establishing ties with foreign shipyards to cope with demand.
The average life span of a sea-going vessel is 30 to 35 years, with classed ships able to operate well beyond 50 years. Unclassed ships, however, are considered old by the time they reach 25.
Source: The Manila Times