BCDA, Japan agency ink Clark Green City deal
A Philippine state agency and a Japanese government corporation yesterday sealed an agreement to chart and start the development of the 9,450-hectare Clark Green City, which will be the country’s first smart, disaster-resilient and green metropolis spanning across towns in Pampanga and Tarlac.
Arnel Paciano D. Casanova, president and CEO of state run Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA), announced that the agency had signed an agreement with the Japan Overseas Infrastructure Investment Corp. for Transport and Urban Development (JOIN), represented by company president and CEO Takuma Hatano, to form a joint venture that would craft a detailed masterplan for the Clark Green City.
Under the said agreement, the BCDA will hold the minority share of 45 percent, while JOIN will control 55 percent of the joint venture company, which is expected to help facilitate the entry of Japanese investments in the power, transportation and industrial sectors at Clark Green City.
Part of this agreement was the development of the $1.9-billion Clark Rail Transit System, which will run from Malolos, Bulacan to Tarlac.
“This is a joint venture agreement with JOIN, which is a government-owned and -controlled corporation of Japan partnering with a Philippine GOCC. (This agreement) will create a platform for Japanese businesses and the government to fund and to develop specific projects in Clark Green City,” Casanova said on the sidelines of the NXCities Philippines forum yesterday.
“For now, before we can proceed with specific projects, we need to do a detailed master plan for the entire city. That’s the first project we’re going to implement, covering the entire city. It will include plans for the utilities, mass transport,” he added.
The joint venture firm will be incorporated in the Philippines, and will have an initial capitalization of about $2 million, which was equivalent to the cost of the masterplan. The said document will cover some 3,000 hectares of the Clark Green City, said Hatano.
According to Hatano, Japanese companies are keen on investing in the Clark Green City particularly in infrastructure, energy, railway, pharmaceutical, water supply and sewage management, and industrial estates.
Hatano said the huge interest of Japanese investors in the Philippines could be attributed to the availability of young, educated and English speaking workforce. Add to that, the country’s strong and steady economic growth and stable political environment.
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