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South Korea agrees to help fund new Cebu container port

South Korea agrees to help fund new Cebu container port
The Cebu International Container Port project has received approval for a soft loan from the South Korean government and is set to be completed by 2020, local reports said.

The PHP9.2bn ($182.1m) project will receive PHP8bn in funding from South Korea through its official development assistance (ODA) programme, while the remaining PHP1.2bn will be provided by the Philippine government.

Finance Assistant Secretary Maria Edita Tan was quoted as saying the Export-Import Bank of Korea (Kexim) had approved the New Cebu International Container Port as one of the projects it would finance through ODA.

The South Korean government, through Kexim, has offered a total of $1bn in concessional loans over a six-year period to finance key infrastructure programmes in the Philippines.

The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) had approved the proposal to build the port, which will be in Consolacion, slightly to the north of the current port, last November and Manila and Seoul are set to finalize the framework for the loan agreement in August.

The project is expected to lessen the congestion in the existing Cebu International Port in Cebu City and reduce vessel waiting time. The new facility will also almost double container yard capacity from the current 7,373 teu  to 14,400 teu.

The port will be be built on a reclaimed 25-hectare island. The project is expected to be implemented in the third quarter.