The Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) has awarded a project to enhance the Philippine Coast Guard’s (PCG) ability to protect the country’s seas, particularly the construction of ten 40-meter multi-role response vessels or MRRVs and their staggered delivery from the third quarter of 2016 up to the third quarter of 2018.
“This project is part of government’s program to equip our forces with necessary assets to protect the national marine interest. These 10 new vessels will help the Coast Guard in its functions of maritime law enforcement, search-and-rescue operations, and upholding maritime security within Philippines seas,” said DOTC Secretary Jun Abaya.
The project, formally called the Maritime Safety Capability Improvement Project, was awarded by the transportation department to the Japan Marine United Corporation (JMU) last week. It is being implemented as an Official Development Assistance (ODA) project, via a tied loan extended by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).
The loan facility covers PhP7,373,700,000 out of the total project of PhP8,807,700,000. The balance will be sourced from the Philippine counterpart of PhP1,434,000,000.
Under the project terms, the MRRVs will be used by the PCG for the following purposes:
* Primary rescue vessels within the PCG Districts’ areas of responsibility (AOR) when the extent of the disaster is beyond the capability of floating assets deployed within the area.
* Assistance in the control of oil pollution and protection of the marine environment.
* Enforcement of applicable maritime laws within the designated AOR, particularly relating to illegal fishing and sea patrol.
* Service as platform for rapid response during relief operations in the area.
* Transport of personnel and logistical support.
The MRRVs will be deployed to various PCG Districts across the country, including Manila, La Union, and Puerto Prinsesa.
JMU’s winning bid is in the amount of 12,790,000,000 Japanese Yen, and includes the supply of standard spare parts and tools, crew training, ocean transportation, and marine insurance. The vessels will have a standard cruising speed of 16 knots, and a range of 1,500 nautical miles.