MPIC-Mrt 3 project expansion unlikely

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Metro Pacific Investment Corp. (MPIC), which owns a controlling stake of 48 percent in Metro Rail Transit Corp (MRTC), said on Wednesday it will not pursue its expansion under the Metro Rail Transit Line 3 (MRT3).

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“I think the chances of MRT 3 are nil to zero. Wala na kaming magagawa dun (There’s nothing we can do about it),” MPIC Chairman Manuel Pangilinan told reporters on the sidelines of the PLDT Group’s announcement of its first quarter results.

Earlier reports said MPIC revived its $300 million offer to expand the capacity of MRTC after signing cooperation agreements with various groups that hold rights and interests in MRT 3. It also made a separate offer of $350 million to acquire the equity and bonds held by a private contractor that built MRT 3.

But it ran counter to the government’s plan to gain control of MRT 3, which President Benigno Aquino 3rd ordered in March 2013 to save huge government subsidies to the railway.

Last year, MPIC asked the government to consider the expansion plan for MRT-3 and its proposal under a built-lease-transfer agreement.

DOTC had said that the takeover of MRT-3 by the government is possible.
The Department of Transportation and Communication (DOTC) said that the MRT3 buyout price is P56-billion and that a takeover by the government is possible.

President Aquino has ordered the acquisition of all outstanding shares of stock an
securities issued by the MRTC and other entities.

The takeover would involve an equity value buyout of all outstanding shares of stock and other securities issued by the MRTC and other entities owning the MRT 3 pursuant to a build-lease-transfer (BLT) agreement.

The Land Bank of the Philippines and the Development Bank of the Philippines hold a combined 80-percent economic interest in MRT-3.

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