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DPWH-ADB kicks off 5-day consultation mission on new major river basin projects

The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) held a meeting on Wednesday, March 13, 2024, to discuss the project features and financing of the proposed Integrated Flood Resilience and Adaptation Project Phase 2 (InFRA 2) which aims to improve the flood risk management along three (3) major river basins in Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.

The meeting, which is part of a 5-day consultation mission for InFRA 2, was led by DPWH Senior Undersecretary Emil K. Sadain and ADB Principal Water Resources Specialist and Mission Leader Eric Quincieu, and participated by officials and representatives from the DPWH Unified Project Management Office – Flood Control Management Cluster headed by Project Director Ramon A. Arriola III, other Bureaus and Services, as well as Regional and District Engineering Offices covering InFRA 2 project locations which are: 1) Apayao-Abulug River Basin; 2) Jalaur River Basin; and 3) Buayan-Malungon River Basin.

DPWH major river basin projects

Also invited during the kick off meeting were representatives from the National Economic and Development Authority, Department of Finance, Department of Environment and Natural Resources, National Irrigation Authority, and Department of Interior and Local Government.

Discussions during the meeting include issues on land acquisition and resettlement; maximizing the water resources management features of the projects to include off stream storage and circular use of water, among others; scope of works; possibility of co-financing; and opportunities for climate concessional financing.

“Everyone’s contribution today will aid in the ADB Consultation Mission Team’s site visits and discussions with local authorities in the coming days. These are vital steps in the conduct of detailed engineering design stage for InFRA 2 which will improve the weather resilience in flood-prone areas,” said Senior Undersecretary Sadain.

DPWH major river basin projects

According to a report by Senior Undersecretary Sadain to DPWH Secretary Manuel M. Bonoan, the ADB-financed InFRA 2 aims to reduce the flood risks along Apayao-Abulug River Basin in Apayao and Cagayan; Jalaur River Basin in Iloilo; and Buayan-Malungon River Basin in Sarangani, South Cotabato, Davao del Sur, and General Santos City, through structural and non-structural measures.

The project covers flood risk management planning; rehabilitating and constructing flood protection infrastructure like dikes, creek widening, sluice gates, and pumping station; raising community awareness, and preparing and implementing disaster risk reduction and management plans to reduce different group’s vulnerabilities.

“We have been very successful with the development of InFRA 1 projects – the Abra River Basin and the Ranao or Agus and Tagum-Libuganon River Basins – which are now under various stages of design. Hopefully, this will be replicated in the implementation of InFRA 2,” added Senior Undersecretary Sadain.

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