GMA News

Top British business experts and companies urged the local business community to consider getting involved in projects under the public-private partnership (PPP) being pushed by the Aquino administration as part of measures toward sustainable expansion.

In a forum hosted by British Ambassador to the Philippines Stephen Lillie, British experts discussed the PPP process, including key legal issues and considerations for foreign investors and financiers.

The experts also presented the critical success factors in the delivery of PPPs and sustainable planning and delivery of urban infrastructure. Experts on PPP come from companies such as PWC Professional Advisors Inc., P & A-Grant Thornton, Baker & McKenzie (Quisumbing Torres), Ashurst LLP, Pinsent Masons LLP, HSBC, Halcrow, Atkins Global, SERCO, and Tony Gee.

The forum is part of Britain’s continuing support for the Philippines’ PPP projects.

“We have a wide and expert range of top quality British companies with experience of PPP right from the start – from the project design, the financing, the legal issues, to the delivery, the engineering, construction – to the end of the project, to the operation and management,” said Lillie in a statement released on Thursday.

The PPP experts are members of a trade mission of British firms interested in engaging in PPP projects in the Philippines and within the region.

The experts are engaged in professional service firms in transaction and legal advisory, project packaging and finance, infrastructure management and technical consultancy and similar areas.

Lillie said more than 100 participants from industry associations, project developers and contractors, financial institutions and government agencies attended the forum.

Looking forward to dialogue

British companies that joined the trade mission to the Philippines also include Arup, Gammon Construction, Systech, Pointer Ltd., Andrews & Wykeham, E & Y, and March Publishing.

The British trade mission also met with a representative of the Board of Investments to discuss PPP projects.

Cosette Canilao, executive director of the PPP Centre in the Philippines, welcomed the members of the trade mission and said, “We look forward to dialogue and to hear inputs and suggestions as we acknowledge UK’s expertise and experience on PPP and infrastructure in general.”

“Our projects need experience and high-caliber professional service firms or organizations in the areas of infrastructure and development project packaging and structuring, financing and delivery, transaction advisory, consulting and other similar or related activities,” Canilao added.

Lillie also said the British Embassy is partnering with the Development Academy of the Philippines to assist local government units who will engage in PPP projects, through a series of workshops for government officials.

“The UK is really the home of public-private partnerships. It was the UK Government’s private finance initiative of 1992, which really put public-private partnerships on the map internationally. In over two decades, we have built up an unrivalled pool of expertise; an unrivalled breadth and depth of expertise in the delivery of different types of public-private partnership projects,” said Lillie. — KG/VS, GMA News