Bacolod seeks funding for bus rapid transit, renewable power projects
BACOLOD CITY – Two projects pitched by the city’s Local Economic Development and Investment Promotions Office (LEDIPO) at the 8th Belt and Road Summit in Hong Kong on Sept. 13 and 14, 2023, have huge potential for foreign funding.
These include the “100 Percent Renewable Baseload Power Supply for Bacolod” and the “Metro Bacolod Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) System”.
LEDIPO head Frances Mae Llamas said on Tuesday that Mayor Alfredo Abelardo Benitez discussed details on these two projects during a networking lunch with financiers and project owners.
“(In a business dealing session), we had two very prospective inquiries. One for the BRT and renewable energy supply, which have huge potential for foreign funding. These are the two most promising based on the six projects we have pitched,” she added.
For the BRT project, a prospective investor from China inquired about a possible route, mainly from this city to the Bacolod-Silay Airport in Silay City.
“They have certain innovations. We have something to look forward to, to enhance not only the affordability and accessibility of travel but also to address and decongest traffic within the city,” she said.
For the second project, an investor wanted to offer a renewable energy option through an alternative plant for homes in the city, she added.
The “100 Percent Renewable Baseload Power Supply for Bacolod” proposal includes geothermal, hydropower, solar, and batteries, with an expected project to start in early 2024.
The “Metro BRT System,” with an approximate value of PHP10 billion, has an expected project start in 2025.
Llamas said that Benitez is also looking to be part of a global financing forum in February next year to seek funding opportunities.
“That is where we will be able to tap international funds for the projects that we have in mind. We have to enhance our funding source. We already have public-private partnerships, we are also looking at projects that will be financed by the city via loans, but we also want to tap foreign grants and ODAs (official development assistance). This is just a start of creating opportunities for the city,” Llamas said. (PNA)