DBM earmarks P8.1B more for infra projects

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The Department of Budget and Management has made available P8.1 billion for flood control and irrigation projects, including P5 billion for a package of projects in Metro Manila and nearby provinces.

Budget Secretary Florencio B. Abad said the funds were ready for release to implementing agencies like the Department of Public Works and Highways once the required documents were submitted.

Abad said the amount came from savings from the budgets in 2011 and 2012.

The bulk of the amount has been earmarked as initial funding for 15 flood-control projects under the DPWH’s Flood Management Master Plan for Metro Manila and Surrounding Areas.

“The DPWH has been tasked to lay down the proper infrastructure to mitigate flooding in Metro Manila and other affected areas around the (metropolis),” Abad said in a statement.

“With the necessary funds already at their disposal, the agency can take advantage of the good weather ahead and fast-track the implementation of these projects, long before the rainy season sets in,” he added.

Last year, the board of the National Economic and Development Authority chaired by President Aquino approved P5 billion in funding for the master plan for 2012 alone.

According to the DPWH, the master plan covers shortlisted structural mitigation measures in high-risk areas, which would be undertaken until 2035 at a total cost of P351.7 billion.

According to the Neda, the 15-project package includes the continuation of construction and rehabilitation of dikes, strengthening of seawalls, river dredging, and construction of river control works.

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