The Philippine PPP Program: Accelerating the Momentum of Growth
Remarks delivered by
Cosette V. Canilao
Executive Director, Public Private Partnership Center
during the regular monthly meeting of the
Foundation for Economic Freedom, Inc.
May 23, 2012, Fairways Room, Wack-wack Gold and Country Club
Former Prime Minister Cesar Virata.
Dr. Felipe Medalla.
Mr. Roberto Ocampo.
Mr. Ramon del Rosario.
Officers and Members of the Board of Trustees.
Ladies and gentlemen.
Thank you to the Foundation for Economic Freedom, Inc. for giving me the opportunity to share with you what we at the Public Private Partnership Center have been working on and have accomplished for the past 17 months since its inception. It is indeed a great honor to speak before the presence of the pillars Philippine economy.
Setting the Stage for the PPP Program of Government
The PPP Center shares with the FEF the same sense of urgency that has pushed us to strive hard and delivered what we have been mandated to do — pursue economic freedom and inclusive growth for all Filipinos, guided under the principles of transparency, accountability and good governance.
When the PPP program of the Aquino administration kicked off in November of 2010, the first order of business was to take a hard look at the mechanisms and institutions vital in making the program work. The President’s marching orders was to conduct the entire PPP process within the framework of good governance.
This was the beginning of a new order of doing business, where investors are assured of a level playing field and where government transactions are conducted within the strictest guidelines of transparency and accountability.
Establishing the Foundations
In September 2010, just two months before launching the Program, the President signed Executive Order No. 8, renaming and reorganizing the BOT Center into the Public Private Partnership Center.
In 2011, the PPP Center’s organizational restructuring was set into motion. The Center hit the ground sprinting, rationalizing its organizational set-up, strengthening the staff compliment, and reviewing relevant laws including legal and regulatory frameworks and policies, to streamline and optimize the PPP institutional set-up.
At the same time that institutional reviews were being carried out, the PPP Center coordinated with Implementing Agencies in identifying PPP projects that may be ready for roll out.
In the same breath, the Center staged capacity-building workshops to re-introduce the concept of PPPs to implementing agencies to help them properly structure their pre-investments activities and make the projects viable and attractive to investors.
We also launched the Project Development and Monitoring Facility (PDMF), a revolving fund whose primary goal is to provide Implementing Agencies assistance for its pre-investment requirements. The PDMF gives them access to highly trained and qualified Transaction Advisors who will work with them in developing their feasibility studies. In November 2011, the PDMF Board approved the 10 projects for PDMF support.
On the Policy front, the Center was also heavily involved in the review and amendment of the BOT law and its implementing rules and regulations.
The Center also started work on the PPP Manual for LGUs and we published and distributed it to the LGUs two months ago. The Manual is a detailed how-to guide for undertaking well structured PPP projects. Workshops on the PPP Manual are continuously being conducted by the PPP Center to LGUs.
2011 in Review
Even as we worked to develop the structures and policies that drive the country’s PPP program, the Center together with the IAs worked on structuring several projects for roll out.
Hence, in 2011, government came out with one project roll out — the Daang-Hari-SLEX Connector Project under the Department of Public Works and Highways, which was awarded to Ayala Corp.
What was significant about the Daang-Hari project is that it proved that the initial processes put in place are working and the market is eagerly anticipating the Program’s roll out.
8 projects in 2012
Almost half way into the first semester of 2012, the IAs have identified and selected thus far 21 projects for PPP implementation, 8 of which will be rolled out this year.
The first one to be rolled out in 2012 was the Department of Education’s PPPs for School buildings Infrastructure Project or PSIP. The project aim is to build 9,000 classrooms in Regions I, III and IV-B, helping cut down the backlog on school buildings for public schools.
The invitation to pre-qualify and bid for the LRT1 South extension is slated to be published soon.
We also have 3 projects for NEDA Board approval next week – the Vaccine Self-Sufficiency Project, the Modernization of the Philippine Orthopedic Hospital, and the NAIAX elevated tollway.
The IAs are also set to submit for NEDA evaluation next month 3 more projects – CALA Expressway, Mactan Cebu Passenger Terminal Building and the Automatic Fare collection system.
The other projects in the pipeline are likewise in the various stages of project preparation
Closing: Accelerating the Momentum of Growth
The PPP Program has made huge strides and that is something that cannot be belittled or ignore considering that the program was only jumpstarted 17 months ago. We appreciate that the private sector and other PPP stakeholders and players, understand the complexity of the PPP process.
Having said that, we are cognizant of the fact that we need to further improve internal processes to accelerate project roll-out. And we assure you that we are continuously finding ways to improve efficiencies without sacrificing quality and while maintaining the necessary checks and balances in government processes.
Our critics say that we have set ambitious targets and that achieving these is no walk in the park. We know that and we understand completely what is required of us and we have been gearing up for this challenge.
It is a daunting task for the PPP Center, to be one of the major players is championing this Administration’s key agenda. What sustains us is the knowledge that we are operating under a renewed sense of hope, that this time around, the country, under President Aquino’s administration, will make it.
Thank you and good night!!