President Rodrigo Duterte and Indonesian President Joko Widodo launched the maiden voyage of M/V Super Shuttle, which will conduct a weekly Ro-Ro ferry service for the Davao-General Santos- Bitung, Indonesia (D-G-B) route.
The M/V Super Shuttle RoRo 12, operated by the Asian Marine Transport Corporation, will provide a faster and cheaper route for trad-ing goods among the East ASEAN Growth Area (EAGA)’s key cities.
The newly opened route is expected to cut shipping time of transporting goods from the usual 5 weeks to 2-3 days, reducing logistical cost in the process and further develop Philippines and Indonesia’s agribusiness, tourism, and education.
Goods for export to Indonesia include animal feeds, fertilizer, construc-tion materials, ice cream products, poultry, fresh fruits and synthetics while imports from Indonesia include matured coconut, copra, corn, feed ingredients, lumber, cement, high value crops and vegetables.
President Duterte encouraged the private sector to play its part in har-nessing the potentials of this new RoRo network. He also promoted the route by encouraging the private businesses to not only take advantage of the opportunities, but also contribute to the sustainability of this en-tire regional shipping network, he said.
“This will also complement the country’s own domestic infrastructure
modernization program,” he said before business and government dele-gations from both the Philippines and Indonesia at the launching of the new shipping route.
President Duterte also thanked President Widodo and the Indonesian government as well as the private sector for their support to make the first ASEAN Roll-on, Roll-off route possible.
Government is preparing for the second route connecting Palawan and Sabah, Malaysia. DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade said the possible sea linkage with Malaysia was broached during a bilateral talk with Liow Tiong Lai, Malaysian Minister of Transport, in Langkawi, Malay-sia.