SMC revives flood control project
A massive Manila Bay flood control and expressway proposal backed by conglomerate San Miguel Corp. has been reactivated, as the Duterte administration opens its doors to unsolicited deals.
The almost P400-billion project, involving a combination of flood control barriers and a Metro Manila to Bataan tollroad, under a 50-year concession period would be pursued by its private sector proponent, Coastal Development Consortium.
“They’re still interested,” Ariel Angeles, head of the public private partnership office of the Department of Public Works and Highways, said in an interview.
The project, dubbed the Manila Bay Integrated Flood Control, Coastal Defense and Expressway Project, would help combat typhoon waves in the northern part of Manila Bay, improve road access and spur economic growth north of the capital district, the DPWH said.
It was first proposed by New San Jose Builders Inc. in 2013, before SMC unit San Miguel Holdings entered in 2015. The proponent’s name then was changed to Coastal Development Consortium.
However, the proposal made little progress in those years, given the Aquino administration’s bias against unsolicited proposals. Recently, Angeles said the proponents had expressed their interest anew and the DPWH was now working under a new schedule.
The new indicative timeline sees the project securing the approval of the National Economic and Development Authority Investment Coordination Committee within the current quarter. This would be followed by the Neda board approval.
Because it is an unsolicited proposal, a competitive challenge will be held. DPWH said this would be launched in the third quarter of 2017 with the actual process to be completed by the fourth quarter.
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