Cagayan de Oro City, July 28 — In response to the call of President Duterte’s State of the Nation Address (SONA) to bring to life the country’s economy, two big foreign funded steel projects in Mindanao are now on stream seen to create thousands of jobs and open up downstream businesses amid the ongoing threat of Covid-19.
The coming of these twin steel plants in Mindanao, one for the revival of the old National Steel Corporation (NSC) in Iligan City and another in Phividec Industrial Estate in Tagoloan, Misamis Oriental will place the country as the “steel center of Asia”.
After years of hiatus, the defunct National Steel Corporation is being readied to regain its lost glory at this of pandemic with a new, state-of-the-art fully integrated steel mill facility.
Reconstruction of the old NSC into a modern steel plant is set to start soon by a leading European supplier of equipment and physical plants to the metal industry.
City Mayor Celso Regencia has acknowledged last week the intent of a foreign-funded consortium in the amount of 4-B euros for the rebirth of the new National Steel Corporation.
This development came as a big surprise after a series of failed investment proposals — mostly from Chinese groups — were presented before the pandemic to Mayor Regencia for the plan to rebuild the defunct NSC.
Regencia expressed optimism the latest investment proposal would push through as it were considering the seriousness of the consortium to proceed amid the growing threat of Covid-19.
“We are bullish with the development to re-construct the mothballed NSC as this would place Iligan City once again in the country’s industrial map”, he po said.
The 400-hectare property of the old NSC is now owned by the city government of Iligan after undergoing a series of legal battles with bank liquidators.
Settlement for the buy-out of the property is now in the last ditch of negotiations with the consortium group.
As a driver of economic growth, the new NSC is expected to generate thousands of jobs to the people of Iligan and the rest of the region.
The country has lost its presence in the steel industry sector after the old NSC had experienced a series of downfalls, latest of which was in the hands of Global Steel, an Indian steel manufacturing group.
With the revival of the old NSC into a modern steel making plant, the economy of Iligan City and the rest of Mindanao will definitely shoot up to an unprecented level of progress, Regencia added.
On the other hand, Phividec has approved a China- funded integrated steel to rise at the 400-hectare property inside PHIVIDEC Industrial Estate in Misamis Oriental.
This was announced by PHIVIDEC Industrial Authority Administrator Atty. Franklin Quijano saying that China’s Huili Fund teams up with the CISDI Group Co. and Philippine-owned Simple Homes Development, Inc. for the project.
The steel mill shall stand on the property for lease with option to purchase awarded to Simple Homes Development, Inc., a subsidiary of A Brown Co. Inc. (ABCI).
These steel plants will level up the country into a leading producer of high quality steel products in Asia.
Likewise, these steel plants will definity provide tremendous contribution to the “Build Build Build” program of the Duterte administration as we cannot build a country without steel, Quijano said.
The world is shrinking due to pandemic, but we are bullish we can recover by creating job opportunities for our people through these integrated steel mills, he added.
The construction phase of the Huili-SH steel mill is set to generate around 10,000 to 30,000 jobs. While regular operations command 3,000 employees.
The Project will cost around USD 4.9 Billion inside a 400-hectare land area and will produce an approximate 5 Million Tons Per Annum of Flat Products such as steel plates, and Long Products such as billets, round bars, and wires.
The Project shall commence upon signing of Agreements.