The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Board has approved three new infrastructure projects totaling P139.77 billion following a meeting chaired by President Benigno Aquino 3rd late Thursday.
The largest of the projects, accounting for most of the total cost of all three, is the Laguna Lakeshore Expressway-Dike Project, which has an estimated price tag of P122.81 billion, the NEDA said in an announcement after the meeting.
The project is intended to provide a high-standard highway-dike that will facilitate traffic flow and mitigate flooding in western coastal communities along the Laguna Lake.
It will serve the fast-growing urban areas in southern Metro Manila toward Laguna, Batangas, and Quezon provinces, and will complement intensive residential, commercial, and industrial land development in those areas.
The second project is the operation and maintenance of the Laguindingan Airport Development in Misamis Oriental, which will improve the airport’s capacity and upgrade its facilities and equipment to international standards through a public-private partnership (PPP) arrangement. The estimated cost of the project is P14.62 billion.
Also approved was a similar operations and maintenance project for the New Bohol Airport Development, which is estimated to cost about P2.34 billion. The project will provide the structuring and implementation of a PPP arrangement for the selection of an international or national consortium to handle active marketing of the airport, and to develop direct international passenger traffic. The consortium will also be in charge of infusing necessary capital investments to upgrade facility capacity according to numbers of passengers or air traffic movements.
“The approval of these new infrastructure projects is a timely contribution to the improvement of the country’s connectivity and efficiency, mitigating disaster-risks, supporting agricultural production, and pursuing energy and water security. These are all in line with strategies of the Updated Philippine Development Plan 2011-2016,” said Economic Planning Secretary Arsenio Balisacan.
The NEDA Board also approved the single P9.35 billion-bid of the Light Rail Manila Consortium for the Light Rail Transit Line 1 South Extension Project. The project will improve access to central Manila through providing off-street public transport connections to the rapidly growing southern portion of Metro Manila and the province of Cavite.
“All these projects are aligned with the government’s overall strategy of increasing public infrastructure spending for the country to provide Filipinos with quality, adequate, and accessible infrastructure facilities and services,” Balisacan, who is also the director general of NEDA added.
The NEDA Board also approved the changes in funding sources and costs for the Casecnan Multi-Purpose Irrigation and Power Project-Irrigation Component (CMIPP-IC) Phase II in Nueva Ecija, and the Umayam River Irrigation Project (URIP) in Agusan del Sur.
It said that the CMIPP-IC Phase II’s funding will now be fully locally-sourced instead of foreign-assisted. As a result, the estimated total project cost was lowered to P5.45 billion from the originally approved P7.61 billion.
Similarly, the URIP will now be locally funded instead of foreign-assisted, which decreased the cost to P1.40 billion from the originally approved P1.56 billion, the Board noted.
In other action, the NEDA Board also confirmed the Infrastructure Committee’s approval of the Transport Development Plan for Metro Manila and its surrounding areas (Regions III and Calabarzon).
“The roadmap will serve as guide in the development of policies, prioritization, and design of programs and projects, as well as harmonize all efforts, realize synergy and improve coordination among transport agencies,” it said.