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Davao City, Philippines

Submarine cable operation to boost tourism in Samal Island

May 02, 2021 - Sunday 5:05 PM by PNA

Article Banner Image Island Garden City of Samal Mayor Al David Uy (PNA photo by Che Palicte)

ISLAND GARDEN CITY OF SAMAL (IGaCoS), Davao del Norte – The operation of the 14.7-kilometer submarine cable project here will boost the local tourism industry, Mayor Al David Uy said. 

Uy said the Northern Davao Electric Cooperative (NORDECO) Inc.’s PHP1.1-billion submarine cable project will provide the impetus for tourism stakeholders in the island to expand their resorts. 

“It (power woes) has been the perennial problem of the residents and the resort owners here. We hope that by September, it will be fully operational. Resort owners cannot expand due to the intermittent power supply and there is also a problem with the water supply since both are electrically operated,” he said in an interview over the weekend. 

Uy is optimistic the project will be fully operational by September since its concrete posts are already established. 

The submarine cable project with a carrying capacity of 50 megawatts (MW) will connect Barangay Aundanao in this city to the Pantukan grid. 

The project broke ground in September 2019 and its completion was hampered due to the occurrence of the coronavirus pandemic, according to NORDECO Inc. general manager Mario Angelo Sotto in a previous interview. 

“That’s the problem, everyone suffered from this pandemic, and supposedly this will be completed last year. We had a meeting with the Korean investors and they will be coming over in June or July this year to conduct the marine survey,” he added. 

The submarine cable project involves the enhancement of transmission and power lines on the entire island which can generate capacity of up to 50 MWs. 

With 46 barangays, IGaCoS has a total demand of 10 MWs thus the project is expected to address the power woes in the entire island. 

“Right now, we only supply 8 MWs in Samal. The 6 MWs are from the Mindoro grid and the other two MWs came from the Davao Light and Power Company,” Sotto added. 

Meanwhile, Engr. Emmanuel Galarse, chairman of the Task Force Duterte Northern Davao Power and National Electrification Administration (NEA) project supervisor for NORDECO, Inc., told Philippine News Agency that the cable which was ordered in Germany was expected to arrive in June or July this year. 

“Overhead lines and the substation is already 70-percent completed and we are only waiting for the cables to be installed. It will just take three months to be completed,” he said.  

Since 2012, the island's residents and resort owners have been complaining about the poor power services because of NORDECO Inc. formerly DANECO Inc.s (Davao del Norte Electric Cooperative Inc.) management conflict with NEA and the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA). Che Palicte