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Drilon to LGUs: Emulate Iloilo City, engage in PPPs

Paolo Romero - The Philippine Star
Drilon to LGUs: Emulate Iloilo City, engage in PPPs
Drilon cited the recent partnership between the Iloilo City government and SM Prime Holdings Inc. for the redevelopment of two public markets in the city.
Facebook / Sen. Franklin Drilon

MANILA, Philippines — Former senator Franklin Drilon has expressed support for President Marcos’ call for local government units (LGUs) to engage in public-private partnerships or PPP to pursue their development goals.

Drilon cited the recent partnership between the Iloilo City government and SM Prime Holdings Inc. for the redevelopment of two public markets in the city.

“I join the call for more meaningful partnerships between the local government units and the private sector to foster inclusive economic growth, infrastructure and employment. This is the way forward. The private sector plays a vital role in promoting progress and in building critical infrastructure that the people need,” he said in a statement.

He added that LGUs should embark on PPPs and emulate the Iloilo City government led by Mayor Jerry Treñas.

“LGUs should embark on PPPs. I encourage the private sector to invest in LGUs. Both should take advantage of a more conducive environment for PPPs that we have today,” Drilon said.

He added that through PPPs, LGUs could meet demands for infrastructure and focus their limited resources on financing much-needed health and social services.

The Iloilo City government recently signed a 25-year lease agreement with SM Prime Holdings Inc. for the redevelopment of the Central Market and Iloilo Terminal Market.

The company has committed to allocate about P3 billion to fund the redevelopment. The partnership will be at no cost to the city and is expected to benefit about 2,800 market vendors.

Drilon lauded Treñas for advocating PPPs and expressed support for the redevelopment of the city’s main markets through such an arrangement.

“It’s about time that we modernize these markets. This initiative bodes well for our efforts to promote Iloilo as a prime tourism destination and as the MICE (meetings, incentives, conferences, exhibitions) center,” said Drilon, who has been instrumental in the development of Iloilo city and the province.

The whole business community is supportive of the city project, according to the former senator.

“I call on political opponents of Mayor Jerry to set aside politics and support this project,” he said.

Drilon allayed fears of the markets’ legitimate stall holders, citing the assurances made in public by the city mayor that they will not be displaced.

FRANKLIN DRILON

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