Monorail project set to go to PPP Center

WITH the National Economic Development Authority (Neda)’s acknowledgement of the proposed 28-kilometer monorail mass transportation system for Davao City, the City Private-Public Partnership (PPP) Board is set to endorse the project to the National Government through the PPP Center on Friday.

The project proponent is Korea Engineering and Construction (KEC), a Korean firm.

The proposed project will traverse from Toril to the Davao International Airport.

“After we will finish the preparation of the necessary documents, maybe this Friday then we will endorse it formally to the PPP Center,” Davao City Investment Promotions Center (DCIPC) officer-in-charge Ivan C. Cortez told reporters Monday at the sidelines of the Kapehan sa Dabaw at the SM City Annex.

Upon endorsement, PPP Center will receive the copies of the monorail project feasibility study and proposal paper.

In an earlier report, the KEC already submitted its feasibility study to Davao City PPP Board in May of this year.

The proponent is eyeing to start commercial operations with initial 36 trains by 2021, the exact year when the National Government projected that Davao City will need a train system to provide service to the transport needs of the Davaoenos.

“As the mass transport system similar to the Light Railway Transit (LRT) and Mass Railway Transit (MRT) is under the jurisdiction of the National Government, we will recommend the project to concerned national agencies like the Department of Transportation and Communication (DOTC) and Philippine National Railways (PNR), so after it will be endorsed formally to PPP Center then the ball will be now to them,” Cortez said.

Based on the project description, the project’s total investment cost between 2016 up to 2020 is estimated at P40 billion including land acquisition and contingency.

The monorail’s daily passenger volume is projected at 92,000 in 2021 and is expected to double at 253,000 passengers per day in 2040.

The project’s annual operating cost is pegged at some P880 million.

Passengers proposed fare is P15 for the first three kilometers and an additional of P1.50 per succeeding kilometer.

Meanwhile, DCIPC supports the push of institutionalizing into law the government's PPP infrastructure centerpiece to highlight the role of the private sector as an important driver for national growth and development.

"Any legal support measure to PPP projects is a welcome development. Institutionalizing the PPP Center will enable the center to have more teeth in the implementation of government programs leading toward the PPP projects to materialize,” Cortez said earlier.

He added that as far as the city is concerned, it has already its own enabling law for PPP projects to be implemented which will be undertaken by the city government.

At present, the bill awaits the House plenary action to retain the PPP Center’s existing organization structure and staff, as well as the existing policy-making Cabinet-level PPP Governing Board.
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