The Manila North Tollways Corp. (MNTC) expects revenue growth of as much as 6 percent to 7 percent this year if a long-overdue toll rate hike is granted by the government.
Without a rate hike, revenues would grow by a slower 3 percent to 4 percent.
“Last year it was P7.5 billion. This year, with our initial target, we expect to grow by around 3 to 4 percent without a toll increase,” Rodrigo Franco, MNTC president, told reporters. “But with a toll increase, it would increase by 6 to 7 percent,” he added.
MNTC, the operator of the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX), earlier said it failed to meet its P8-billion revenue goal last year because it was not allowed to implement a toll fee increase.
MNTC said that on a daily basis, NLEX has an average traffic volume of “close to 180,000” vehicles, while the Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway or SCTEX has some 28,000 and Cavitex has about 101,000.
According to its concession agreement, MNTC was supposed to hike its toll by 11 percent effective January 2013. The concession allows for toll adjustments every two years.
In November last year, MNTC said that its failure to hike toll fees would translate to about P1.8 billion in revenue losses.
MNTC filed a petition with the Toll Regulatory Board (TRB) for the bi-annual adjustment of toll rates in NLEX, which fell due on January 1, 2015 under its concession terms.
MNTC said that the rate adjustment is on top of an earlier petition it submitted in 2012, which was supposed to have taken effect in January 2013. The latest petition would bring the cumulative toll rate adjustment to 15 percent, of which 12 percent, according to the company, is long overdue.
At present, tolls at NLEX from Mindanao Avenue to Sta. Ines amount to P218 for Class 1 vehicles (cars, jeepneys, pickup trucks and vans), P544 for Class 2 vehicles (two-axle trucks, buses and vans), and P652 for Class 3 vehicles (trucks and trailers with three or more axles).
Meanwhile, MNTC also cited the need for a road widening to decongest the expressway, particularly in key toll exits.
Metro Pacific Tollways Corp. (MPTC) and MNTC are subsidiaries of Metro Pacific Investment Corp. (MPIC). Manuel Pangilinan, who is also MPIC president, said the contract has been renegotiated two times and is now on its third year.
Metro Pacific Tollways Corp. (MPTC) is the parent company of MNTC. MPTC is a subsidiary of conglomerate Metro Pacific Investments Corp. led by Pangilinan.