Hanjin launches P 1.2 Billion Worker’s Housing Project
Monday, 30 July 2012 20:29
Henry Empeño / Correspondent
CASTILLEJOS, Zambales—Korean shipbuilding firm Hanjin Heavy Industries and Construction Co.-Philippines (HHIC-PHL) has broken ground for a mass-housing project for its employees, an initiative the company undertook in collaboration with the government’s Home Development Mutual Fund or Pag-Ibig Fund.
HHIC-PHL President Jin Kyu Ahn, along with Pag-Ibig Vice President Malen Acosta, Castillejos Mayor Jose Dominguez, and other local government officials led on Wednesday the groundbreaking ceremony for the project at Barangay Nagbunga this town.
The housing facility, which will be located in a 30-hectare land that the company had purposely bought for the project, will cost P1.2-billion and where 1,000 housing units will be built, Ahn said.
He added that the houses, which will have various models the employees could choose from, will be built by real-estate developer Fiesta Communities Inc. Ahn said the Korean company has initiated the housing project to ensure that its workers will have the opportunity to own affordable housing packages. The firm, which started operation at the Subic Bay Freeport’s Redondo Peninsula industrial area, now has close to 20,000 employees.
Ahn said Hanjin employees with at least one-year continuous service units could avail themselves of the units with monthly amortizations of as low as P2,392 without any down payment.
“This housing project is part of our mission to promote the welfare of workers by providing them with a dream house within their reach,” Ahn said. The mass-housing site is about 19 kilometers from the Hanjin shipyard. Ahn said it will have all the needed facilities like an elementary school, bus terminals for free-shuttle buses, multipurpose hall, as well as an extension office for the barangay, among others. “All these features translate to better quality of life for the shipyard employees and their children,” noted Ahn.
The first phase of the project will involve the construction of 1,000 housing units, to be completed in the next few months. The second phase is expected to be finished before the end of 2013.
Ahn said the employees could choose from models which will either have three bedrooms, two bedrooms or one bedroom. Hanjin had earlier projected its work force to progressively increase from 16,000 in 2008 to 22,000 by the end of 2010, and up to 25,000 in 2012 because of new building orders that it had booked over the years up to 2013.
Meanwhile, Acosta said the Hanjin housing project will be one of the biggest single housing projects in the country today and can be considered a showcase of the Public-Private Partnership Program.
“If there is one government agency that is very much happy today, it is the Pag-Ibig. And with the partnership between the local government of Castillejos, private corporation HHIC and Pag-Ibig, we are very glad to extend financial assistance to the employees of Hanjin and we expect to deliver 300 units by the end of November this year,” Acosta said.
Mayor Jose Dominguez, on the other hand, described the project as a “dream come true” for Castillejos, and expressed hope that it will become a catalyst for further economic growth in his town.
“Once completed, the 3,000 housing units for 3,000 employees would mean at least 12,000 individuals living in a well-cared community. This will become the start of a bigger Castillejos which I am dreaming of long before,” he said.
For his part, Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority Chairman Roberto Garcia congratulated HHIC officials for starting the project that will provide shelter for shipyard workers and their families.