PPP Forum: Financing Options for PPPs
Opening Remarks of Executive Director Cosette Canilao
The Peninsula Manila, Makati City
April 24, 2015

Good morning to everyone!

We are truly humbled that you are all here today in one of the more important events that the PPP Center has organized for the year. We take your presence as a manifest show of support to the Administration’s PPP Program and the unwavering confidence you accord the government in its efforts to push the country’s infrastructure development agenda thru Public Private Partnerships.

Let me begin by extending our sincerest thanks to our partners who believed in the the strategic importance of this event. To BPI Capital Corporation, Macquarie Capital, Sumitomo Mitsubishi Banking Corp., SunLife Financial, BDO Capital and Investment Corporation and HSBC Philippines. To our partners in government who have relentlessly worked with us to ensure the success of this activity, we thank you for your cooperation. To the banks and financing institutions that shall be participating in the meet-and-match later this afternoon, we appreciate and are once again are overwhelmed by your support. And to the investors who have taken time to participate and listen to the various financing options, welcome and we hope you will be able to maximize the benefits you can gain from this forum.

As the name of the forum suggests, we are here today with the goal of exploring and facilitating various potential options to finance PPP projects. We aim to have a number of open and productive sessions tackling the most relevant topics and hopefully address concerns related to finance raising.

For our part in government, we are proud to say that we have put together a robust pipeline of projects, the bigger one of which we intend to continue to roll out in the coming months. Although we know we have achieved so much in terms of building a steady deal flow, we recognize that there are still other crucial things to be done, especially in the area of making the projects more bankable for project financing.

We’ve streamlined the government’s various processes and we vigorously work towards making sure that projects are successfully tendered. Such improved efficiency has been met with great support from the private sector as more and more bidders have participated in the tender process. Ultimately, our success is evidenced by the fact that we’ve already awarded a total of nine (9) projects with a collective project cost of USD 3 billion (PHP 136.36 billion).

As regards our projects pipeline, we currently have about 50 projects worth over USD 23 billion. The line-up includes fourteen projects currently under tender such as the Laguna Lakeshore Expressway Dike Project worth over USD 2.7 billion, the New Centennial Water Source Kaliwa Dam Project – USD 400 million, the regional airports project collectively worth more than US 2.5 billion, Regional Prisons facility project costing USD 1 billion, and the Davao Sasa Port Modernization project (USD 422 million).

The government thru the PPP Center also worked on formulating and adopting key policies that addressed some weaknesses under the current legal and regulatory framework. To name a few, we have worked on providing government policies on Pipeline Development, Viability Gap Funding, PPP Best Practices, and Termination Payments. We have established the inclusion of the Contingent Liability Fund in our annual General Appropriations Act. And to institutionalize all the reforms we have initiated and further strengthen the legal framework of our proven and tested processes, we are pushing for the enactment of the PPP Act or the amendments to the BOT Law.

To facilitate ease of due diligence and enhance transparency, the PPP Centre has developed a PPP Knowledge Management Portal which includes a Virtual Data Room (VDR) system – a highly secure online facility for storing, accessing, and distributing relevant tender documents. We aim to institutionalize the use of the VDR in all of our PPP projects.

Finally, we are working on further strengthening the capability of government to deliver commitments post award, especially the timely delivery of right of way. We are also closely coordinating with the Dept. Of Trade and Industry in smoothening the process in securing BOI incentives.

These are but a few of the key measures that have contributed to the success of the Program. We are here to ensure that we can continue and even build on this success. Rest assured that the government is eager to listen to what you have to say and what you need from us. Our eagerness to listen is only equaled by our drive to act on things that are needed to be done to ensure our goals of forging productive partnerships is achieved.

Welcome to all of you and I look forward to meaningful and productive sessions.

Thank you.