Belle targets 49% stake in ARRC

Iris Gonzales (The Philippine Star) - November 3, 2016 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines – Belle Corp., the high end property developer of the SM Group, plans to acquire up to 49 percent of the Tieng family’s All-Asia Resources & Reclamation Corp. (ARRC), the proponent of the Philippine Global Gateway project.

The Philippine Global Gateway project is the ambitious $50 billion airport and seaport proposal off the coast of Sangley Point in Cavite.

In a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE), Belle EVP and CFO Manuel Gana said the firm “is currently planning to acquire an equity stake in ARRC of up to 49 percent subject to the finalization of the subscription agreement.

Details on the project, including its components, timing and investors are still being worked out by ARRC, Belle said.

The project is an unsolicited proposal which competes with another international airport project amounting to $10 billion proposed by San Miguel Corp. president Ramon Ang, possibly in partnership with corporate tycoon Manuel Pangilinan.

ARRC said the proposed airport would have a capacity of 50 million passengers and is envisioned to accommodate passenger traffic well into the year 2050.

Aside from Belle, China Communications Construction Co. was also joining the consortium with plans to invest about $20 billion in the project.

According to ARRC president Wilson Tieng, President Duterte has already “verbally approved” the massive infrastructure project during his fifth Cabinet meeting in August.

SMC, the proponent of another airport project, meanwhile, said its proposed airport would be in the province of Bulacan.

Ferdinand Constantino, SMC chief finance officer, said the proposed site of the airport would be adjacent to Manila Bay and the province of Bulacan.

“The company submitted, for the consideration of the government, an unsolicited proposal for the construction, operation and maintenance of an international airport which will address the continuing air congestion problems of the country and enhance its competitiveness in trade and tourism,” Constantino said.          

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