More vessels and larger ships can now be accommodated by the expanded and improved Siquijor Seaport which was inaugurated on Thursday, 26 August 2021 by Department of Transportation Secretary Art Tugade.
“With the improvements that we are doing at the airport and seaport, soon, Siquijor will be known as ‘Isla del Progreso.’ In other words, you will now have a massive change in connectivity at the seaport of Siquijor,” Sec. Art said.
The port expansion project covers the construction of an RC Wharf with Ro-Ro ramp and a back-up area.
Twenty-five units of solar lights were also installed in the port. This translates to lower electricity cost and will reduce the port’s carbon footprint.
With its improved facilities, the port now allows for faster vessel turnaround time and a shortened waiting period for passengers and shippers. This will eventually reduce the queueing of rolling cargo.
Siquijor Governor Zaldy Villa, in his message during the inaugural ceremony, told the Transportation Chief that the development projects in the province will truly impact the locals' way of life.
“Before the pandemic, there was a demand for us to upgrade due to the increased number of trips coming from Cebu, Bohol, and Dumaguete. This pressured us to look for additional funding sources,” he pointed out as he explained the necessity of the said infrastructure.
“Whenever we have events, the Siquijornons will chant: 'Dream Siquijor!' and now, it has already come to light. Our dream is already a reality! Taus-pusong nagpapasalamat po kaming lahat kay President Rodrigo Duterte at DOTr Secretary Art Tugade for helping us achieve this,” Gov. Villa expressed.
Prior to the upgrade, the Siquijor Seaport can only service a maximum of four (4) ferries. With the renovation works already completed, it can now serve up to eight (8) vessels with provision to handle a 65-meter cargo ship and can service two Ro-Ro vessels at the same time.
The upgraded Siquijor Port will also boost equitable and inclusive growth in the areas of employment, local trade, and investments.
When it was being upgraded, the port generated 35 jobs. Moreover, with development projects now complete, the Siquijor Port is expected to further open more job opportunities for residents of the province, particularly in the tourism sector and other tourism-related industries.
Earlier in the day, Sec. Art also inaugurated the Siquijor Airport. These two transport infrastructure projects are vital for the economic and tourism growth of the province.