State-owned Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP) has granted a
P4.17-billion term loan to Megaship Builders, Inc. (MBI) to upgrade and expand its shipbuilding and ship repair complex in Albuera, Leyte, a top official said.
DBP President and Chief Executive Officer Emmanuel G. Herbosa said that the loan proceeds will be used to partially finance the construction of the shipyard’s second and third slipways, office building, and other support facilities.
“Once completed, this shipyard expansion project is expected to increase the capacity of the shipyard from 10,000 Deadweight tonnage (DWT) to 200,000 DWT, thus accommodating an average of 10 vessels per month from the current two vessels per month,” Herbosa said.
DBP is the seventh largest bank in the country in terms of assets and provides credit support to four strategic sectors of the economy – infrastructure and logistics; micro, small and medium enterprises; social services and community development; and the environment.
MBI started operations in June 2016 and is engaged in shipbuilding, ship repair, design, construction, outfitting and launching of any type of vessels or watercraft. It is also the first shipbuilding and drydocking company in the Visayas that utilizes marine airbag technology in drydocking vessels – a departure from the traditional common carriage-type method.
DBP Executive Vice President for Development Lending Jose Gabino D. Dimayuga said the project would help address the lack of viable shipyards that could accommodate the growing number of vessels in the country, which presently has a ratio of 204 vessels to one shipyard.
He said as an archipelagic country, it is imperative for the Philippines to enhance its transport infrastructure and logistics facilities to promote physical integration and seamless movement of goods that would create economic opportunities especially those living in the coastal areas.
“There is tremendous potential for the Philippines to unlock the intrinsic value of its shipbuilding industry as the country has both strong demands for smaller vessels in the domestic market and is presently is an exporter of large, commercial ships for the international market,” Dimayuga said.