Marcos Approves 23 New Infrastructure Flagship Projects

President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. Photo from PCO
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President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. has given his approval for 23 new infrastructure flagship projects (IFPs) under his administration’s Build Better More program. The announcement was made during a meeting of the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) board, which is chaired by the President.

Although the specific details of the new projects have not been disclosed, President Marcos stated that these additions bring the total number of IFPs to 185, with a combined value of P9.14 trillion. In a social media statement, he expressed his enthusiasm for the developments, highlighting the inclusion of the Davao City Bypass Construction project.

The Davao City Bypass Construction Project involves the expansion of the bypass road between Davao City and Panabo City in Davao del Norte. The project aims to reduce travel time from over 2 hours to just 49 minutes upon completion. The NEDA has approved an increase in the project’s cost to P70.8 billion, and the implementation timeline has been extended until December 31, 2027.

NEDA Secretary Arsenio Balisacan explained that the decision to prioritize these projects was made to ensure they receive the necessary support for efficient and accelerated implementation. The list of IFPs under the Build Better More Program serves as a tool to identify high-impact infrastructure projects that require immediate government attention. By rationalizing the list, the government aims to focus on the implementation of important infrastructure projects that hold significant economic and social significance.

Balisacan clarified that certain projects that have been removed from the list will still proceed as planned, as they were already part of the regular government programs. This ensures that a comprehensive approach is taken towards infrastructure development in the country.

According to the NEDA, as of the fourth quarter of last year, 74 IFPs have been implemented, 30 have been approved for implementation, 10 are awaiting government approval, and 83 are undergoing project or pre-project preparation. Among the 74 projects, 19 are set to be completed this year. These include the Camarines Sur Expressway, the Central Luzon Expressway Phase 1, the Flood Risk Improvement and Management Project for Cagayan de Oro, the Health System Enhancement to Address and Limit Covid-19 Project, and the Integrated Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation Measures in the Low-Lying Areas of Pampanga Bay Project.

Looking ahead, several projects are scheduled for completion in 2024. These include the NLEX-SLEX Connector Road, the North South Commuter Railway, the Panguil Bay Bridge, the Palascao-Balatan Tourism Coastal Highway, the Pasig-Marikina River Channel Improvement Project Phase 5, and the Philippine Identification System, among others.

Balisacan emphasized the government’s commitment to infrastructure development as a key driver of the economy and its aim to improve the lives of every Filipino. While significant policy reforms have already been implemented to address long-standing constraints to sustainable and resilient infrastructure, further efforts are necessary to boost infrastructure investment and execution. The NEDA will closely monitor the progress of the infrastructure flagship projects to ensure they are completed and delivered on time.

President Marcos’ approval of these new infrastructure projects demonstrates the government’s dedication to advancing the country’s infrastructure and promoting economic growth. These developments will not only enhance transportation and connectivity but also contribute to the overall development and well-being of the Filipino people.

Source: The Manila Times

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