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Groups await bidding for new railway PPPs

/ 03:34 AM September 08, 2015

Big conglomerates are anticipating the rollout of two additional railway public private partnership (PPP) deals that the board of the National Economic and Development Authority approved last Friday.

Officials of San Miguel Corp., Ayala Corp. and Metro Pacific Investments Corp. said they would consider bidding for PPP contracts involving the Light Rail Transit Line 4 and Line 6 once these are launched by the Department of Transportation and Communications.

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This was confirmed by San Miguel president Ramon Ang, Metro Pacific Investments president Jose Maria Lim and Ayala Corp. managing director John Eric Francia Monday.

All these groups are active participants in the Aquino administration’s PPP program, which aims to tap private sector support in building crucial public infrastructure such as airports, trains, roads, schools and hospitals.

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The requirements are still large as the Asian Development Bank estimated that the Philippines needed to pour about $127 billion into infrastructure spending between 2010 and 2020. PPPs could account for about 40 percent of that amount, PPP Center executive director Cosette Canilao said in a briefing last week.

The two newest railway PPPs aim to expand and augment the three elevated train lines serving Metro Manila, which suffers from constant road congestion.

The PPP Center said the P64.7-billion LRT Line 6 will be a 19-kilometer railway extending from Niyog, Bacoor, to Dasmariñas City, both in Cavite province.

The LRT-1 PPP project, whose expansion and operations contract was won by a tandem between Ayala and Metro Pacific in 2014, currently ends in Baclaran station in Pasay City, Metro Manila, and its extension to Bacoor, Cavite, is set to be completed by 2020.

According to the PPP Center, LRT-6 is expected to boost passenger mobility and reduce the volume of vehicular traffic in the Cavite area by providing a higher capacity mass transit system.

The LRT-4 is a proposed 11.3-km rail project estimated to cost P42.89 billion. It will run west from SM City in Taytay, Rizal, to the intersection of Ortigas Avenue and Edsa in Ortigas.

“This project will provide improved local transportation solutions and a better link to Metro Manila for the large and growing population in and around Taytay,” the PPP Center said.

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That brings to three the number of PPP projects set for rollout, including the P1.6-billion Civil Registry System Information Technology Project (Phase II).

As of this month, 13 PPP projects are being tendered, including two railway projects, the LRT-2 operations and maintenance contract and the P171-billion North South railway project. So far, the Aquino administration had awarded 10 PPP deals valued at about $4.2 billion.

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TAGS: Business, Conglomerates, NEDA, public private partnership deals, rollout
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