Government scales down PPP projects for 2011

October 7, 2011 at 10:08

The government has scaled down its projects under the so-called public-private partnership (PPP) starting this quarter from the original 10 it had proposed.

There are four projects worth P34.3 billion in advanced stages of preparation, Cosette Canilao, deputy executive director at the Public-Private Partnership Center, said in an interview on Tuesday. They include two toll roads, a plan to build about 10,000 classrooms and a proposal to manufacture vaccines such as influenza, diphtheria and tetanus, she said.

“Planning these projects takes a great deal of time to ensure their success,” Canilao said. “We want to create a program that can become a legacy that would solve our nation’s infrastructure needs.”

More than a year after announcing its infrastructure plans, President Aquino’s administration has yet to seek bids from investors for projects under the public-private plan. The delay may undermine Mr. Aquino’s goal to bolster growth to create jobs and cut poverty as the Philippines competes with the rest of the region for foreign capital to develop roads, ports and utilities.

From 1970 to 2009, the Philippines lured less foreign direct investments than its Southeast Asian neighbors, according to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development. It attracted $32.3 billion, compared with $285.8 billion for Singapore and $104.1 billion for Thailand.

The government may invite bids to extend railway lines and operate airports after the first quarter of 2012, Transportation and Communications Secretary Mar Roxas said this week. These projects were earlier planned for 2011.

“It’s becoming more disappointing already,” said Euben Paracuelles, a Singapore-based economist at Nomura Holdings Inc. “Without new investments coming in, the pent-up investments we saw earlier this year will start to weaken. Coupled with the fiscal situation, investors will increasingly see this as a worry as growth may suffer.”
By: Bloomberg News
Source: Business Mirror, Oct. 5, 2011
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