Philippine and Japanese officials on Wednesday night conducted the exchange of notes on Tokyo’s ¥37.906 billion ($336.24 million) loan assistance for the Pasig-Marikina River Channel Improvement Project Phase IV, and the ¥167.199 billion ($1.413 billion) loan commitment for the North-South Commuter Railway (NCSR) Extension Project.
AP/Arnulfo Franco
Japan commits P95-billion loan for 2 infrastructure projects
Mary Grace Padin (The Philippine Star) - November 23, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Japan has committed to provide ¥206 billion (P95 billion) worth of loans for two infrastructure projects under the Duterte administration’s ambitious infrastructure program, according to the Department of Finance (DOF).

Philippine and Japanese officials on Wednesday night conducted the exchange of notes on Tokyo’s ¥37.906 billion ($336.24 million) loan assistance for the Pasig-Marikina River Channel Improvement Project Phase IV, and the ¥167.199 billion ($1.413 billion) loan commitment for the North-South Commuter Railway (NCSR) Extension Project.

The documents were signed by Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. and Japanese Ambassador Koji Haneda following the sixth meeting of the Philippines-Japan Joint Committee on Infrastructure Development and Economic Cooperation in Pasay City.

The loan for the Pasig-Marikina River Channel Improvement Project covers the final phase of the initiative, which seeks to mitigate the frequent flooding caused by the overflow of the Pasig-Marikina River.

The final stage covers the river channel improvement works along the stretch of the Upper Marikina River, from the downstream of the Manggahan Floodway to the Marikina Bridge, and includes the construction of the Marikina Control Gate Structure.

Meanwhile, the ¥167.199 billion loan for the NCSR Project represents the first tranche of Japan’s financing commitment for the project.

It involves extending the NSCR railway from Malolos in Bulacan to Clark InternationalAirport (CIA) in Pampanga and from Solis in Manila to Calamba in Laguna.

Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez said the exchange of notes for the two projects came only a week after the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) board approved the projects, in line with the “fast and sure” approach adopted by the two governments.

Aside from the documents on the two loans, the Philippine and Japanese government on Wednesday also signed other bilateral documents, including the Contract of General Consulting Service for the Metro Manila Subway Project (Phase I) between the Department of Transportation (DOTr) and Japanese consulting firms; and the joint venture agreement among the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA), Japan Overseas Infrastructure Investment Corp. for Transport and Urban Development (JOIN), and Surbana Jurong for the New Clark City Project.

Both countries also updated the list of projects that are being considered for possible financing assistance from Japan going forward.

“In this latest meeting, both sides confirmed the updated candidate list of projects for consideration and action. This list includes new projects proposed for Japanese loan and grant financing,” Dominguez said in a press briefing.

“Among the projects that were discussed for financing through Japanese Official Development Assistance are road construction and expansion projects in northern Luzon and Metro Manila, flood management and drainage improvements, and various components of the New Clark City project,” he said.

He said Philippines and Japan discussed the progress of the Metro Manila Subway Project, including the addition of an extension to the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) in the detailed engineering design of the system.

Both sides then reaffirmed their commitment to ensure the partial operability of the country’s first subway system by May 2022. – With Pia Lee-Brago

DEPARTMENT OF FINANCE INFRASTRUCTURE METRO MANILA SUBWAY PROJECT
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