The Northern Mindanao ports of Cagayan de Oro, Iligan, and Ozamis will continue the special BIMP-EAGA tariffs charged on vessels operating to and from the Philippines and the Brunei-Indonesia-Malaysia-Philippines East Asian Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA) following the expiration of the Brunei-Philippines bilateral agreement for uniform port tariff (UPT) initially entered into by the Philippines in 2005. The deal requires renewal every two years. Both countries have yet to start negotiations for an extension.
The Philippines — through the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) —unilaterally enforced the UPT in all BIMP-EAGA ports, not just in Brunei.
“In the absence of negotiation for the extension of the arrangement, the unilateral application of the BIMP-EAGA UPT for Philippines and Brunei is hereby adopted,” the document signed by PPA general manager Atty. Oscar Sevilla showed.
Under the one-sided application, all vessels carrying the flag of Brunei or plying the BIMP-EAGA route when calling in the Philippines will be charged $0.40 per gross revenue ton (GRT) per call as port dues and $0.20 per GRT per calendar day or fraction thereof as dockage fee.
To avail of the special port charges, Brunei vessels under the BIMP-EAGA program should secure certificates or accreditation from its authorized government agencies allowing them to ply the trans-EAGA route. The special port charges are only applicable when the vessel’s last and next ports of call are in BIMP-EAGA ports.
Other Philippine ports covered by the UPT are Davao, General Santos, Polloc, Zamboanga, Jolo, Puerto Princesa, Bongao, and Nasipit.
The BIMP-EAGA is set to adopt uniform policies on immigration, customs, quarantine and security in a meeting this month.