Two memorandum of understanding (MOU) are currently being finalized by the Spanish Embassy in the Philippines and the Philippines’ Department of Finance (DOF), following Spain’s proposal to invest in the current administration’s various projects, mainly in the Infrastructure, agro-food and tourism sectors.
Spain offers to fund €300 million to cover possible projects in Infrastructure, Energy and renewable Energy, telecommunication, water treatment, solid waste treatment, agro-food industry and tourism sectors. The cost of borrowing offered by Spain to the Philippines is a 0.25% interest rate over a 35-year period, and 1.15% rate over a 20-year period, as of the third quarter of 2018.
Another agreement on economic and financial cooperation is also being proposed by Spain, with focus on investments in the current administration’s “Build, Build, Build” (BBB) program, particularly in railway build-ups. The Philippine government has welcomed the offer, citing that Spain and its companies are most welcome to take part in the 75 flagship projects under the BBB, particularly in providing rolling stock and other equipment for the rail projects in Metro Manila and Luzon.
Under this proposed MOU a Joint Intergovernmental Committee (Joint Committee) will be created to identify opportunities for cooperation in such fields as agriculture, transportation, basic Infrastructure, disaster-risk finance, Energy and Environmental economics. This joint panel will be composed of representatives from both countries, to be co-chaired by an undersecretary of the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) and the Secretary of State of Trade of the Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness of Spain, with a representative from the Department of Finance (DOF) as member.
Last November Spain pledged an additional PHP 2.619 billion (USD 50 million) for the reconstruction and rehabilitation of the war-torn city of Marawi in Mindanao. Spain’s pledge is on top of the technical assistance it had provided to government agencies, in preparation for the implementation of projects under the Bangon Marawi Comprehensive Rehabilitation and Recovery Program (BMCRRPP).
(Sources: Philippine News Agency; Business Mirror; Philstar Global)