PH Navy nearing takeover of part of Hanjin shipyard
MANILA, Philippines—The Philippine Navy is getting closer to its takeover of a chunk of Hanjin’s shipyard in Subic Bay, which is a strategic asset.
Outgoing Flag Officer in Command Vice Admiral Giovanni Carlo Bacordo said the Philippine Navy signed last May 31 a term sheet for 100 hectares of the northern part of the yard.
“That means the negotiations will continue, that we have accepted the terms,” he told reporters at a press briefing. “That the negotiations between Cerberus Group and our government will continue, that we are serious in this Hanjin,” Bacordo said.
The next step, he said, would be signing the terms of reference.
“All the details, the payment details, the stay of the Navy, for how long, all of these will be in the terms of reference,” Bacordo said.
Australia’s ambassador to the Philippines, Steven Robinson, said in early May that he hoped to see Australian shipbuilder Austal and US-based Cerberus Group agree on the purchase of the shipyard in the coming months.
Subic Bay, a former US military base until 1992, is home to the shipyard, whose South Korean operator filed for bankruptcy in 2019. It is 260 kilometers from the Chinese-controlled Scarborough Shoal in the West Philippine Sea.
Bacordo said he was looking forward to the Navy parking its vessels in the shipyard’s deep harbor, which he said was ideal for large fleet ships.
“All of our Del Pilar-class patrol vessels, our Tarlac-class landing docks, our Conrado Yap-class corvettes and our Jose Rizal-class frigates, they have not docked in any Navy facility since they arrived in the country,” he said.
“With this Hanjin, it may be the first time that it will be docking in a Navy facility,” he added.
The Navy uses civilian facilities in South Harbor in Manila, Subic Bay and other commercial ports to house its biggest vessels.
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