By: Villamor Visaya, Jr.
SANTA ANA, Cagayan — As the Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (CEZA) celebrated its 24th year anniversary, six projects worth a total of PHP1 billion and the USD4.5 billion (PHP234 billion) satellite city (Polaris) were unveiled in a series of groundbreaking ceremonies and inspections here on Monday.
CEZA administrator and chief executive officer Raul Lambino said the projects which are under the “Build, Build, Build” program of the Duterte administration include the PHP301 million warehouses at Port Irene in Casambalangan village, the PHP426 million corporate and commercial centers in Rapuli village, PHP100 million Ropali Point Development in Pozo Robo, the PHP155 million wharf in San Vicente village, and the PHP17-million sanitary landfill construction in Diora-Zinungan village.
Port Irene is envisioned to become the premier international port of Northern Philippines, capable of accommodating panamax and cape-sized vessels catering to the Asia Pacific Region markets.
“It will be developed as a major international seaport that will serve as a gateway for exports and imports from neighboring East Asian countries to the US West Coast, among others,” he said.
The development for Port Irene includes the construction of four units of warehouses with offices within the one-hectare property for Phase 1, expandable up to three hectares, he added.
In San Vicente village, Lambino led the inspection of the rehabilitation and expansion of the Port San Vicente Wharf and Causeway.
CEZA deputy administrator Raymundo Roquero said: “The San Vicente Port is the take-off point to tourism destinations in the Cagayan Freeport, such as Palaui Island. Small boats are currently being utilized to ferry tourists from the said port to Palaui Island and other tourist areas in the zone. This project aims to accommodate leisure fishing boats, sail boats and luxury yachts, and further advance the status of the Cagayan Freeport as a premier game fishing destination”.
In Diora-Zinungan village, the construction of the PHP17-million sanitary landfill would “address the current waste disposal requirements of the Cagayan Freeport” in Santa Ana town.
“CEZA has initially developed a two-hectare sanitary landfill for Phase I, expandable up to 10 hectares. CEZA recognizes that this initial endeavor will not be sufficient once the operations in the Freeport will reach its full potential. As such, much needs to be done for the liquid and solid waste management of the area and these are now being studied and open for investment from the private sector,” Lambino said.
Lambino and other guests also broke ground for a corporate and commercial center worth PHP426 million for the first and second phases within the 11.40-hectare land in Sitio Punti, Barangay Rapuli. To be erected are institutional areas, retail areas, conference hall, dining hall or restaurant, office spaces, CEZA Corporate Center Services, public lobby and parking spaces.
The USD4.5-billion project called Polaris City in Sitio Mapurao, San Vicente village was also unveiled in groundbreaking rites. It will include the CEZA Township Project, a 2013-hectare property with an ocean-view and open for business spaces for IT-BPO companies, commercial and residential areas, health, wellness, leisure and recreational facilities.
In Sitio Pozo Robo in San Vicente village, the 238.48-hectare projects include the Marina Yacht Club, beach club and commercial areas, casino and entertainment, the residential resort villas, high-end resorts, spa and wellness center, parks and open space, forest reserve, and roads and utilities. (PNA)