Road project 'not affected' by US shutdown-A A +A
Thursday, October 3, 2013
CONSTRUCTION of the US-funded $214.4 million (some P926,0850,000) Secondary National Roads Development Project (SNRDP) in Samar Island will not be affected by the US government shutdown.
Maria Victoria Añonuevo, chief executive officer of Millennium Challenge Account-Philippines (MCA-P), said the fund disbursement for the last quarter of the year was approved last week, thus assuring smooth project implementation until December 2013.
"There's no effect as the funds have already been committed. Approval is done quarterly and we got the disbursement approval for last quarter of 2013 just last week," Añonuevo said.
Under the agreement, MCA-P may request disbursements to be made under the grant by submitting a written request to the Millennium Challenge Corporation not later than 20 days prior to the commencement of each disbursement period.
For 2013, all disbursement of Philippine compact projects SNRDP, Kapit Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan-Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (Kalahi-Cidss), and Revenue Administration Reform Project (Rarp) have already been signed by MCC before Monday's shutdown.
"We have cash disbursement approval already for the rest of 2013. It would really be a disaster if the shutdown lasts until next year," Añonuevo said.
The US government had shut down for the first time in 17 years as legislators failed to pass a new budget on time.
The official said that implementation is on track and they expect to complete the rehabilitation of all four road segments by April 2016.
"All of the four contract packages of the road project are now on its construction phase," Añonuevo said.
MCA-P is a Philippine entity responsible for managing the implementation of the $434 million (P18,692,380,000) grant from the US government's MCC.
The road project, the biggest component of the US grant, has four contract packages. It was awarded to seven contractors. Only two are based in Eastern Visayas.
The $214 million (P9,216,980,000) grant from the US government covers road widening, rehabilitation, drainage and other safety measures, bridge construction and engineering interventions on road slips and landslides.
Officially signed in September 2010, the $434 million grant includes $214.4 million for SNRDP, $54.3 million Rarp, $120 million Kalahi-Cidss, $8.26 million for monitoring and evaluation and $36.91 million program administration and oversight. (Leyte Samar Daily Express)