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NEDA on high-impact infra projects: Marcos admin will get the job done

Arsenio Balisacan

The Marcos administration remains resolute in its commitment to bolster connectivity, facilitate investment, and generate more jobs, as it pursues the efficient implementation of high-impact infrastructure projects.

In a press briefing in Malacañang on Wednesday, National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Secretary Arsenio Balisacan provided insights into the recent developments stemming from the 8th National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Board Meeting chaired by President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr.

“By ensuring the efficient implementation of high-impact infrastructure projects, the Marcos Administration aims to get the job done. We will enhance connectivity, reduce the cost of doing business, promote the creation of high-quality jobs, and ultimately reduce poverty sustainably to improve the lives of every Filipino,” Balisacan said.

He reported that the meeting centered on the implementation of key Infrastructure Flagship Projects (IFPs), where there are already 71 ongoing projects worth PHP 4.11 trillion, as of July 2023, which increased from the 68 projects reported in the first quarter.

Balisacan said there are three additional projects that have advanced to the ‘ongoing’ phase, namely the Metro Cebu Expressway, the Nautical Highway Network Improvement, and the Daang Maharlika Improvement projects.

Meanwhile, out of the remaining 123 IFPs, 27 have secured approval for immediate implementation, 8 await government approval, 52 are currently in the preparatory stages, and 36 are in the pre-project preparation phase as of July 2023.

He also reported that the NEDA Board confirmed the revised guidelines governing the formulation, prioritization, and monitoring of IFPs.

“Projects approved by the Investment Coordination Committee, or ICC, and confirmed by the NEDA Board, which are not in the current IFP list, but meet the criteria indicated in the IFPs Guidelines, shall be included in the IFP list, subject to the endorsement from the concerned implementing agencies,” Balisacan said.

Following the revised guideline, Balisacan reiterated the NEDA Board approval to include three more projects under the list of IFPs, namely the Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway (TPLEX) Extension Project, the Philippine Rural Development Project Scale Up, and the Upgrading, Expansion, Operation, and Maintenance of the Laguindingan International Airport Project in Misamis Oriental.

“With their inclusion in the list, these projects will be prioritized in the government’s annual budget preparation and will benefit from the expedited issuance of applicable permits and licenses, in accordance with current legal frameworks,” he said.

“This is a significant contribution to the timely implementation of these projects and fully realizing their economic returns, as this will help the government avoid the possibility of increasing costs and financing charges due to delays,” he added.

The NEDA Board also gave the greenlight for a request for a change in cost, scope, and implementation timeline of the Flood Risk Management Project for the Cagayan de Oro River.

Along with this is the approval of the provision of six fire trucks for Marawi City through an Official Development Assistance (ODA) grant worth PHP 72.5 million from China. This initiative aligns with the Bangon Marawi Rehabilitation and Recovery program, which focuses on revitalizing areas affected by the 2017 Marawi siege. | PND

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