February 16, 2022
The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and Department of Finance (DOF) have signed on Thursday, February 10, 2022, the JPY253.30 billion Loan Agreement for the second tranche of Metro Manila Subway Project (MMSP), Phase I.
Accelerating the transport infrastructure of the country, JICA has committed to support the Philippine Government in implementing the PHP357 billion MMSP, Phase I. The envisioned 27-km MMSP will run underground from East Valenzuela City to the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Terminal 3) in Pasay City. Once completed, the MMSP can accommodate about 370,000 passengers per day while reducing the travel time from 1 hour and 10 minutes to just 45 minutes.
Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez expressed his appreciation to the Japanese Government for continuing financial support for the construction of the Project which is one of the flagship projects under the "Build, Build, Build Program" of the Administration.
"This second tranche loan is not only representative of the headway that this flagship project has achieved, but also an evidence of the Philippine and Japan's solid partnership to expanding railway infrastructure and enhancing the country's connectivity under its Build, Build, Build program." said JICA Chief Representative AZUKIZAWA Eigo.
He added, "Here we are in 2022, making tangible progress in certain sections, with more contracts already in various stages of procurement and implementation, and needing this fresh financing to ensure the sustained advancement of the Project for Filipinos to soon realize the dream of having its very own world-class subway system based on Japan's experiences and technologies, to ease the traffic burden, and improve the overall quality of life."
While the COVID-19 pandemic has brought challenges in the implementation of the Project, it is also envisioned that the MMSP will support economic recovery by creating more jobs for the Filipinos.
Currently, the Department of Transportation (DOTr) has already executed and started works for contracts on consulting services, civil works, trains, and electromechanical systems. Remaining civil works contracts are expected to be procured and awarded soon.
The MMSP has been identified in 2014 under JICA Study "Roadmap for Transport Infrastructure Development for Metro Manila and its Surrounding Areas", which is also known as the "Dream Plan for Metro Manila". Following this, JICA extended grant to the Philippine Government for the conduct of Preparatory Survey and Detailed Design Study. The first tranche of Loan amounting to JPY104.53 billion to finance the implementation of the Project has been executed in 2018.
Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez (left foreground) and JICA Chief Representative AZUKIZAWA Eigo (right foreground), joined by (background from left) DOTr Undersecretary Timothy John Batan, Finance Undersecretary Mark Dennis Joven, and Ambassador of Japan to the Philippines KOSHIKAWA Kazuhiko at the signing ceremony. Photo courtesy of DOF.