Subway project can't be completed under Duterte admin, Diokno says
Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno admitted on Wednesday a subway project is one of the 75 major projects of the Duterte administration which could not be completed under the current government.
In a breakfast forum in Pasig City, Diokno assured that at least five stations of the Metro Manila Subway Project could be completed by 2022.
The budget for the 2018 would include allocation for feasibility study for the subway project, which is being eyed to be financed through the official development assistance from Japan.
"There will be some money there (in the 2018 proposed budget) for may be some feasibility study, etcetera. But this I think will start sometime late 2019 or early 2020. This is one of the few projects, one of the 75 major projects that the Duterte administration which will not be finished during his term," he said, noting that the completion of the 10 to 12-station subway could be completed in six to 10 years.
"But we want to make sure that before he (President Rodrigo Duterte) leaves office, at least five stations will be opened," he said.
In a separate statement, the National Economic and Development Authority Board’s Investment Coordination Committee-Cabinet Committee (ICC-CC) has given its nod for the MMSP-Phase I.
The project will run from Mindanao Avenue in Quezon City and, following the ICC-CC’s directive, will terminate at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) in Paranaque City. Its initial investment requirement is estimated at ?355.6 billion.
The project also involves the construction of a 28-hectare training center and depot, as well as and other related facilities. Implementation period is from 2018 to mid-2025.
“The first phase of the MMSP will not only ease traffic in Metro Manila but also improve the quality of life of Filipinos. For one, carbon emissions will be reduced. And, with greater mobility, people can spend more time on things that matter to them,” Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia said.
The project proposal is still subject to approval by the NEDA Board, which Duterte chairs.
The government officials earlier said they hope to get a formal commitment from Japan to finance the subway project when Prime Minister Shinzo Abe attends the ASEAN summit and related meetings in Manila in November. Celerina Monte/DMS