During the 11th meeting convened by President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. at the Malacañang Palace in Manila, the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Board approved 3 high-impact infrastructure projects.
Arsenio Balisacan, the Socioeconomic Planning Secretary and NEDA Director General, stated in the Palace briefing the approved projects of NEDA: the Department of Agrarian Reform’s (DAR) Pang-Agraryong Tulay Para sa Bagong Bayanihan ng mga Magsasaka (PBBM) Bridges Project worth PHP 28.2 billion (USD 501.2 million); Phase 3 of the Maritime Safety Capability Improvement Project for the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) worth PHP 29.3 billion (USD 520.8 million); and the revised parameters, terms and conditions (PTCs) of the Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway (TPLEX) Extension Project.
Balisacan said the PBBM Bridges Projects aims to enhance access and connectivity for agrarian reform communities by building around 350 modular steel bridges with an estimated total length of 10,500 linear meters. He said that the project seeks to increase the productivity and income of at least 350,000 households to improve the quality of life in rural areas. Additionally, the project will enable ease of mobility and access to and from the agrarian reform communities thus generating more employment and addressing the communities’ need for better access to social services and market outlets for their agricultural products.
Moreover, Balisacan said that phase 3 of the Maritime Safety Capability Improvement Project for the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) includes the design, construction, and delivery of five units of 97-meter multi-role response vessels, as well as a five-year integrated logistics support. This project aims to enhance PCG’s capacity to respond to threats and incidents within the country’s maritime jurisdiction. In particular, the project will enable the Coast Guard to secure important sea lines of communication in the West Philippine Sea, Sulu-Celebes Seas, and the Philippine Sea. He also mentioned that it will help the PCG combat illegal activities and enforce maritime laws in the Philippine waters. The total project cost will be financed by an official development assistance or ODA loan from the government of Japan.
As recommended by the NEDA Board’s Investment Coordination Committee (ICC), the revised PTCs of the TPLEX Extension Project were negotiated between the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) and the original proponent of the unsolicited public-private partnership (PPP) project. Following the approval of the project, the DPWH will proceed with the publication of the invitation for comparative proposals following the Revised 2022 Build-Operate-Transfer Law Implementing Rules and Regulations, as well as the ICC Guidelines on Processing PPP proposals.
The TPLEX Extension Project, which was approved last June 2023, a 59.4-kilometer toll road will connect from the last exit of TPLEX in Rosario, La Union and will terminate in San Juan, La Union. Balisacan stated that the project aims to alleviate road congestion, provide better and safer road access, promote the development of new growth centers in nearby regions, and stimulate economic activity.
Source: Philippine News Agency