The prospects of turning the Port of Batangas into a hub for international cruise ships are “not so good” right now, the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) said recently.
That move is not expected to happen in the next five years, and there are a lot of factors to consider, according to PPA Batangas Port Manager Leopoldo Biscocho.
“It would require additional investment on the part of PPA, such as capacity requirements and security matters,” he said.
Unlike Palawan, home to renowned island destinations El Nido and Coron, tourist spots in Batangas are not very accessible from the port, Biscocho said.
“If you bring them to Manila, you [will]have to ferry them for about 70 kilometers, so this may not be attractive to tourists,” he added.
Ongoing development in Batangas has also created traffic, not only going to Manila, but also to different towns in the province.
Officials, however, are confident that this would be resolved once the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) completes its P8-billion project of building access roads in various districts.
Biscocho’s statement came after Batangas Gov. Hermilando Mandanas expressed interest to develop the Batangas port as a hub for international cruise vessels.
The governor is having exploratory talks with cruise companies now, Batangas Provincial Tourism Officer Sylvia Marasigan said.
“The Provincial Engineering Office is doing rehabilitation/dredging of the Batangas port for cruise ships to enter,” she added.