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MPIC hikes offer to P20 B to take over MRT-3

“The details of the proposal have changed. The required amount of investment is larger,” MPIC president and chief executive officer Jose Ma. Lim told reporters. File

MANILA, Philippines — Metro Pacific Investments Corp. (MPIC) has increased its proposed amount of investment to rehabilitate as well as take over the operations and maintenance of the Metro Rail Transit Line 3 (MRT-3), from an initial P12 billion to P20 billion.

“The details of the proposal have changed. The required amount of investment is larger,” MPIC president and chief executive officer Jose Ma. Lim told reporters.

He said the required amount of investment for the MRT-3’s rehabilitation, maintenance and operations is now P20 billion, which includes the firm’s equity requirement.

When the group submitted the proposal to the government last July 14, it involved an investment of P12 billion.

Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade said last month the Department of Transportation has granted the group of MPIC and Ayala Corp. the original proponent status for the MRT-3’s rehab as well as operations and maintenance. 

The proposal would involve the rehabilitation of the train system without any fare increase for at least two years, as well as the handling of operations for  30 to 32 years.

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Following the grant of original proponent status, Lim said the group is now waiting for the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) to review the terms of the proposal.

“NEDA will review the terms of our proposal. They’ll discuss it. If acceptable, then it will be subject to a Swiss challenge,” he said.

Should the group be awarded the concession for the MRT-3 which covers North Ave. station in Quezon City until Taft station in Pasay City, the rehabilitation, operations and maintenance would be pursued through a separate special purpose vehicle, similar to the ownership structure of Light Rail Manila Corp. (LRMC).

LRMC, which operates the Light Rail Transit Line 1 currently running from Roosevelt station in Quezon City until Baclaran station in Parañaque, is composed of MPIC’s Metro Pacific Light Rail Corp., Ayala Corp.’s AC Infrastructure Holdings Corp., and Macquarie Infrastructure Holdings (Philippines) PTE Ltd.

Earlier, MPIC chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan said it is important to address issues of the MRT-3 for the benefit of consumers.

The train system along Edsa which has been going through a series of breakdowns and service interruptions, currently carries more than 500,000 passengers per day. 

 

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