While “traveling” around Google Maps looking for interesting and intriguing places to feature here in Vista Pinas, I stumbled upon this long 700-meter or so jetty in Bislig City, Surigao del Sur. It turns out that this is the PICOP Causeway. located in the PICOP Compound in Brgy. Tabon. This jetty, also called the PICOP Pier and the PICOP Coastway, was constructed in the late 70s by PICOP Resources, Inc. as a “barrier for log water storage” according to this Bislig History page.
PICOP Causeway is by no means the most popular tourist attraction in Bislig City (that would be the Tinuy-an Falls, popularly nicknamed the Little Niagara of the Philippines), but it certainly seems to be one of the favorite spots for outdoor activities in the city. I’ve seen references on the web where the causeway has been used as a picnic ground, as an airsoft rifle playground, and as a place for fishing, stargazing, sightseeing, and swimming. Danipas Beach, at the shoreline end of the jetty is another popular activity area.
Anyway, what’s so special about PICOP itself? Well, PICOP Resources, Inc., is intrinsically tied to the development of Bislig City and is its largest company. PICOP Resources, Inc. (PSE:PCP), formerly the Bislig Bay Lumber Company, Inc. (BBLC) and Paper Industries Corporation of the Philippines, Inc. (PICOP), is a multibillion-peso pulp and paper mill having its main operations in this Surigaoan city. Founded in 1952, the paper mill is, according to various sources, most probably the biggest paper mill in the Philippines and one of the largest in Southeast Asia.
Back when the company was founded, Bislig was a forgettable backwater rural town on the shores of Bislig Bay. PICOP then built a paper mill there and its operations spurred the development of Bislig, which in 2000, became Caraga region’s third city after Butuan and Surigao cities. PICOP is the reason why Bislig has the nickname Paper Capital of the Philippines.
If you want more information about Bislig City, you might want to contact Joey Climaco, an active persona in the Philippine blogging community and a native of Bislig City. [Hi Joey!]