Senator Richard J. Gordon said on Sunday that the Philippine can establish its own shipbuilding industry to ensure that the military will have the capability to secure the country and its territorial waters from piracy and terrorism.
Gordon said that in the midst of internal and external threats against the Philippines, the government should make an effort to strengthen the country’s military.
“We are an archipelagic country; we should be able to build ships. We should have ships made in the Philippines – in Cebu, in Hanjin in Subic. We should really make an effort to strengthen our military because we are facing both internal and external threats. At the same time, we should consistently assert our national territory, which includes Scarborough Shoal and Benham Rise, in no uncertain terms,” he said.
He pointed out that Filipinos have the talent and capability to build the country’s own ship.
The Hanjin Heavy Industries & Construction-Philippines has recently launched the first-ever Subic-made 20,600-TEU (Twenty-Foot Equivalent Unit) class container vessel.
“Building our own ships would be cheaper and it would give our naval architectural designers a chance to get what we want. Dapat maglagay na tayo ng sarili nating [We should put our own] capability to build our own ships,” the senator noted.
Gordon added that adding naval architectural designing in the curriculum of the country’s maritime academies and institutions would step up Filipinos’ craftsmanship in designing vessels.
“I have always advocated that we should build our naval and coast guard assets. Our Navy and Coast Guard must have sufficient capability to patrol and protect our territory and sovereignty. That is why during the TRAIN deliberations, I even pushed for the earmarking of revenues for military modernization and the President personally assured that he will make military modernization a priority,” he added.
He also emphasized the President’s vow to make military modernization a priority.