US military equipment arrives in Subic for Balikatan 2016

SUBIC BAY FREEPORT, Philippines — A huge number of U.S. military vehicles and heavy equipment arrived at the Subic Bay International Airport here on Tuesday for use in the coming annual joint Philippine-US military exercises “Balikatan 2016.”

Robert Chester, director of Liberty Call Logix Corporation, a Subic-based one-stop-shop for land, sea and air services coordinating the arrival of the US military cargo, said “this military cargo will be used in the coming Balikatan joint military exercise between the United States and the Philippines.”

The cargo include humby vehicles, trucks, jeeps, back hoes, bulldozer and others.

Chester said that part of the cargo will be for humanitarian and disaster relief assistance as well as community projects.

He declined to comment if some of the military cargo would be distributed to the four air bases and one army camp in some part of the country that the US had identified its troops will use as temporary bases.

These places were earlier identified as: Antonio Bautista Air Base in Puerto Princesa in Palawan; Basa Air Base in Floridablanca, Pampanga; Fort Magsaysay in Palayan, Nueva Ecija; Lumbia Airport in Cagayan de Oro; and Mactan-Benito Ebuen Air Base in Cebu.

The US troops were allowed on Philippine soil again after the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) was signed between the Philippines and the US in April 2014.

Its implementation was delayed because the Supreme Court had to look at the constitutionality of the deal.

Last January, the SC ruled the agreement to be constitutional. PNA/