Manila: The Philippines is pressing ahead with an amendment to its cabotage law, something championed by President Benigno Aquino. A local politician has now filed a measure to liberalise the entry of foreign ships into the archipelago and for them to be able to handle coastal trade. Rufus Rodriguez, the representative for Cagayan de Oro, said foreign expertise was needed as local shipping lines were too inefficient.
“The cabotage policy limits competition and encourages inefficiency among local vessel operators since foreign vessels are not allowed to pick-up local cargo for delivery to another port within the Philippines. Local vessel operators are not forced to compete in terms of freight coast and service quality with international vessel operators,” he said in his explanatory note to the bill. [25/07/13]