Government agencies are now conducting due diligence on Chinese companies looking to participate in Philippine infrastructure projects, a Cabinet official said.
A list of recommended contractors for the P18.7-billion New Centennial Water Source-Kaliwa Dam Project in Quezon and the P2.7-billion Chico River Pump Irrigation Project in Cagayan and Kalinga was submitted by China’s Ministry of Commerce last September 6, Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez 3rd told reporters.
“Under the China protocol we agreed with the Chinese that for their projects they will name three candidate bidders,” Dominguez said, referring to ventures that will be funded by Beijing.
The prospective contractors for the National Irrigation Administration (NIA) project were identified as CAMC Engineering Co. Ltd., China Geo-Engineering Corp., and Qingdao Municipal Construction Group Co. Ltd.
Candidates for the dam project, which will be under the Metropolitan Waterworks and Sewerage System (MWSS), are China Energy Engineering Co. Ltd., PowerChina Ltd. and a consortium formed by Guangdong Foreign Construction Co. Ltd. & Guangdong Yuantian Engineering Co. Ltd.
“Currently, NIA and MWSS are conducting their due diligence in vetting the said Chinese companies/contractors subject to applicable laws, rules, and regulations,” Dominguez said.
The implementing agencies are also organizing project management teams to make sure that financing arrangements would be expedited, he added.
Once the vetting process is completed, Dominguez said the NIA and the MWSS would immediately commence the procurement process and undertake a limited competitive bidding among the qualified companies/contractors.
The irrigation and dam projects are among the first batch of Philippine infrastructure deals that will be funded by China.
The Duterte administration has expressed a preference for Chinese investments. Last March, both countries signed a six-year development program that “aims to steer and promote the stable and orderly development of economic cooperation between the two countries.”