The Philippine and South Korean governments have signed a loan agreement amounting $80 million for a disaster risk reduction project in Pampanga province.
A statement from the Department of Finance (DOF) said that the loan agreement will support the implementation of the Integrated Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation Measures in the Low Lying Areas of Pampanga Bay Project.
Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima signed the agreement on behalf of the Philippine government while Export-Import Bank of Korea (Kexim) Chairman and President Yong Hwan Kim signed on behalf of the Republic of Korea.
“With the project, the extent, level and duration of flooding in the surrounding areas of the Pampanga delta will be reduced, and the capacity of educational facilities in the area in coping with disasters will be enhanced,” Purisima said.
Under the agreement, the South Korea, through Kexim-Economic Development Cooperation Fund, will provide an official development assistance loan amounting to $80.483 million to primarily support the excavation and dredging of the Third River, Caduang Tete River and Sapang Maragul River in Pampanga by the Department of Public Works and Highways.
The DOF explained that the project is envisioned to mitigate flooding in the low-lying areas of Macabebe, Masantol, Minalin and Santo Tomas along the Pampanga delta.
Furthermore, the loan will support the Department of Education’s reconstruction of 232 classrooms in 47 schools, embankment heightening of 26 schools, and construction of deep well pumps in 11 schools in the area.
The South Korean government has continually extended assistance in various development projects, most especially in rural areas in the Philippines including.
Some of the projects that has been assisted by South Korea include the construction and development of the Laguindingan Airport in Misamis Oriental, the Jalaur River Multipurpose Project Stage II in Iloilo Province, and the recently signed Samar Pacific Coastal Road Project. MAYVELIN U. CARABALLO