Two more transport projects have been approved for support from the Project Development and Monitoring Facility (PDMF) after the PDMF Committee approved the applications of the Department of Transportation (DOTr) for PDMF funding.

At the PDMF Committee meeting, Friday, the Mindanao Railway Project Phase 3 (Northern Mindanao) and the San Mateo Railway Project, hurdled the Committee’s approval process to allocate funds to support pre-investment studies and transaction advisory services requirements for both railway projects. Once the project studies are completed, the projects will be submitted for the approval of the Investment Coordination Committee to confirm their viability for public-private partnership (PPP) implementation.

The PDMF Committee is chaired by the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) with the Department of Finance (DOF), Department of Budget and Management (DBM) and the PPP Center as members of the Committee. The PPP Center acts as the PDMF Secretariat. Meanwhile, Undersecretary for Planning and Project Development, Timothy John Batan represented the DOTr in the meeting.

The PDMF is a revolving fund managed by the PPP Center established to enhance the investment environment for PPPs and develop a robust pipeline of viable and well-prepared PPP infrastructure projects.

PPP rail projects

The proposed San Mateo Railway Project involves the financing, design, construction, and operations and maintenance (O&M) of an approximately 17-km feeder railway line connecting LRT 2 to the municipalities of San Mateo and Rodriguez, Rizal. The rail project will run from Marikina City, San Mateo and Rodriquez Rizal, and is expected to have six (6) stations traversing mostly parallel to the riverbanks.

The proposed Mindanao Railway Project Phase 3 (Northern Mindanao) is a 54.8-kilometer segment of the Mindanao Railway System spanning across the highly urbanized city of Cagayan de Oro, connecting the Municipalities of Laguindingan and Villanueva, Misamis Oriental. The whole Mindanao Railway is a 1,544-kilometer railway system that will span the entire island of Mindanao and aims to improve efficiency of transport and connectivity to major cities and other gateways in the island (i.e., Davao, General Santos, Cagayan de Oro (CDO), Iligan, Cotabato, Zamboanga, Butuan, Surigao, and Malaybalay (Bukidnon).

PPP is not privatization

The Mindanao Railway Project, Phase 3 and the San Mateo Railway Project are planned to be undertaken using the PPP scheme via solicited mode. While these transport projects will be developed, financed, operated and maintained by the private sector, these projects will be owned by the Philippine government as mandated under the existing BOT Law. In a privatization, government relinquishes control and ownership of a publicly-owned or operated project.