^

Business

Korea extends P79.2-M grant for Aurora ecozone

- Manny Galvez -

AURORA SPECIAL ECONOMIC AND FREEPORT ZONE , Philippines — A total of P79.2 million in grants has been extended by the South Korean government to the Aurora Pacific Economic Zone (Apeco) to bankroll the feasibility studies for three major projects inside the ecozone.

Robbie Mathay, Apeco president and chief executive officer, said the Korean grant, which s coursed through the Korean Export-Import Bank, will be used to finance studies for water system, hydroelectric power and waste management systems inside the ecozone.

He said the Korean grant not only manifests the Korean government’s resolve to help the Philippines, which has Korea as its fifth largest trade partner, but also its confidence in the economic prospects and opportunities in Apeco,” he said.

Mathay noted that the Korean government has been very supportive of efforts to develop Apeco and early this year funded a feasibility study through a P15-million grant from the Korean Economic Development Cooperation Fund for the construction of a P2.4-billion international container seaport aimed to transform this economic zone into a logistics hub for exportation of agro-fishery, timber and industrial products in Central Luzon and northern Luzon.

Mathay said the seaport project is now awaiting approval of the National Economic Development Authority for funding under the Official Development Assistance of the Korean government with counterpart funding from the National Government. A consortium composed of the Dasan Engineering and DY Engineering companies completed the feasibility study for the international container seaport after three months.

The proposed modern container port, which is projected to be finished in four years, will complement the domestic seaport and will attract business locators, thus, spurring economic development not only in Central Luzon but also in Cagayan Valley through the export products of five provinces in Northern Luzon, Mathay said.

He added that the Korean government has also expressed interest in constructing an all-weather road in the remaining unpaved portion of the 120-kilometer Baler-Casiguran Road.

Kent Avestruz, Apeco manager for corporate planning, said there is now an increasing involvement of the Korean government in the country which has clearly spilled over to Aurora, citing the construction a few years back of a P130-million grant-in aid-funded rice processing complex in Barangay Reserva through the Korean International Cooperation Agency (KOICA).

Only last week, President Aquino met with visiting Korean President Lee Myung-bak where they signed five agreements that will further enhance their bilateral relations on trade, agriculture, labor, power and development assistance or foreign aid.

Avestruz noted that Korean grant aid in the country is at its largest in 2011, with KOICA providing P1 billion for development programs in its priority sectors in agriculture, infrastructure, health and climate change.

Since its inception in 1991, KOICA has infused P4.4 billion in grant assistance to the country.

APECO AURORA PACIFIC ECONOMIC ZONE BALER-CASIGURAN ROAD BARANGAY RESERVA CAGAYAN VALLEY CENTRAL LUZON DASAN ENGINEERING ECONOMIC GOVERNMENT KOREAN MATHAY
  • Latest
  • Trending
Latest
Are you sure you want to log out?
X
Login

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

FORGOT PASSWORD?
SIGN IN
or sign in with