OBSERVATION POSTS. Philippine Navy chief Vice Admiral Giovanni Carlo Bacordo and other ranking military officials inspect one of the retired gas platforms off Malampaya, Palawan on Sept. 26, 2020. The Armed Forces of the Philippines plans to convert the platforms into Navy’s littoral monitoring station. (Photo courtesy of PN PAO)
MANILA – Vice Admiral Giovanni Carlo Bacordo has visited retired gas platforms Nido and Matinloc to check their viability for conversion into littoral monitoring stations (LMS), the Philippine Navy (PN) said on Sunday.
The PN commander visited the facilities located off Malampaya, northeast Palawan on Sept. 26.
“This inspection intends to look at the viability of these retired gas platforms to be converted to observation posts for Recto Bank and Malampaya gas platform. This will further enhance our capability to protect our maritime interests in these strategic locations,” Bacordo said.
The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) plans to convert the two retired gas platforms into PN’s observation posts or LMS.
The platforms’ location is deemed to be “strategic and vital” due to its proximity to Recto Bank, Malampaya and Galoc Gas Fields.
The Malampaya Gas Field is located 820 meters deep, 80 kilometers off the coast of Palawan which falls under the area of responsibility of Naval Forces West.
The future LMS of the PN is a welcome addition to the Navy’s improving capabilities to better serve the country especially in its critical location near the nation’s source of natural gas.
The Department of Energy last year ceased the over 40 years of production operations of these two gas fields.
The transfer of ownership of these platforms was offered by the DOE in several meetings of the National Task Force in the West Philippine Sea. It is the Department of National Defense’s position to acquire said platforms and expeditiously transfer it to the AFP. (PNA)