Lite Shipping Corporation has inaugurated the newest addition to its commercial shipping fleet that would service the still in-demand sea routes in the archipelagic country particularly in Visayas and Mindanao.
Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio and Rep. Edgar Sarmiento, chair of the House of Representatives’ committee on transportation, led the ribbon-cutting ceremonies for M/V Lite Ferry 5 at the Port of Cebu on Monday.
Lite Ferry 5 which was classified by Italy-based classification society RINA (Registro Italiano Navale) will ply the Oslob, Cebu-Dipolog City, Zamboanga del Norte route.
Duterte-Carpio in a brief speech expressed confidence that the route serviced by the new vessel will help spur further economic growth in the Visayas-Mindanao area.
“With the increasing our industrial, manufacturing, property developing, information and communications technology and other business and infrastructure developments in Mindanao, this world-class ferry is definitely a welcome addition to VisMin sea transport services,” Duterte-Carpio said.
Duterte-Carpio was welcomed to the ceremonies by Lite Ferries president and chief executive officer Lucio E. Lim, Jr., chief operating officer Fernando A. Inting, vice president for operations Jonathan Lim-Imboy and commercial operations head Jethro Nathaniel Lim-Imboy.
According to Lite Shipping, construction of the brand-new vessel was completed in 2019. It is a 75-meter long roll-on, roll-off passenger coastwise ship.
The 2895-ton vessel was made in China but classified by RINA, one of the oldest classification societies in the world.
It has wide passageways on its passenger decks and a spacious cargo deck that can accommodate 540 passengers and 23 10-wheeler trucks. It has a maximum speed of 15 knots and a service speed of 13 to 14 knots.
The vessel was granted “Pioneering Status Protection” by the Maritime Industry Authority for the Oslob, Cebu-Dipolog City, Zamboanga del Norte route under EO 909 and MC 2015-4.
However, the vessel will temporarily take the Oslob, Cebu to Dapitan City route pending the dredging completion of the Dipolog Port under the supervision of Dipolog City’s local government unit.