BOT Law amendments pushed
ILOILO CITY, Philippines—Passing into law the proposed amendments to the Build-Operate-Transfer (BOT) Law would ensure that the reforms introduced by the Aquino administration in the implementation of the centerpiece public-private partnership or PPP program could be passed on to the next administration, an official said on Thursday.
In a press conference held on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) Workshop on Infrastructure Financing and Capital Market Development, PPP Center executive director Cosette V. Canilao said her group remained hopeful that the BOT Law amendments would be approved by both chambers of Congress this year.
“The amendments will institutionalize the reforms (such as the agency’s governance structure) put in place by the PPP Center,” Canilao said.
The measure will also create a project development monitoring facility that will help accelerate the procurement process for PPP projects and, at the same time, designate so-called “projects of national significance” that will be shielded from any “adverse” local government action, she added.
Challengers to unsolicited PPP project proposals will also be given more time—six months from just two months previously—for due diligence, Canilao said.
The amendments to the BOT Law will likewise “remove the roadblocks not only in bidding out projects but also in executing the projects post-award,” she said.
“It’s one of the priority bills of the President, and we’re closely working with the leaders of both houses so that this is taken up in the next few months,” according to Canilao.
The PPP Center official said the Aquino administration remained on track to its goal of finishing five PPP projects—the two phases of the PPP for school infrastructure project, the opening of the Daang Hari-South Luzon Expressway Link Road, the Automatic Fare Collection System or rollout of the so-called “beep” cards, and the partial opening of the Naia Expressway—by October or November.
Since the PPP initiative was introduced in 2010, the government has awarded 10 projects.
Canilao said the PPP Center and the implementing agencies were currently bidding out 13 projects.
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