SoKor investor eyes PPP for Davao project

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/28 July) – A South Korean investor is set to meet with City Mayor Sara Duterte for the proposed Davao Riverside Boulevard project that will be enrolled under the Public-Private-Partnership (PPP).

This was revealed by Engr. Jose Froilan T. Rigor, planning officer 4 at the City Planning Development Office (CPDO) in an interview at the sidelines of the “Forum on Urban Development” at the Ateneo de Davao University on Tuesday.

He said the proposed project, a bypass road, will span at least 15 kilometers covering Barangay Bucana-Bankerohan Bridge-Diversion Road, and ease up traffic congestion in the city’s central business center.

“From the city’s central business district, you can use the bypass road to go along the way the Diversion Road. It will alleviate the traffic,” he said.

He said the investor, Korean Engineering Corp., will do a feasibility study on the project as soon as the mayor would give her go signal.

He said the investor came to know about the development of the Davao Riverside Boulevard project when they visited South Korea in November 2015 to look for private companies who will invest in the city’s planned PPP projects.

The construction of a Davao Riverside Boulevard is one of the priority projects as per the 2013 Comprehensive Land use Plan. It will have commercial strips, open spaces, and parks, according to Rigor.

President Rodrigo R. Duterte’s economic team has promised to cut down the processing time for the PPP projects from 28 to 20 months.

National Economic Development Authority Director General Ernesto Pernia believed that streamlining the processes would entice more investors.

“PPP program’s performance is rather not too good. It’s not really encouraging and very little has been achieved during the last six years in terms of rolling out PPPs. There’s a lot of effort needed in boosting particular PPPs,” he said.

Pernia said red tape must also be addressed.

During the 1st Businessworld Economic Convention in Shangri-La at The Fort, Taguig City last July 13, Finance secretary Carlos Dominguez promised no delay in the PPP projects.

“They stopped the PPP project for two years while they were reviewing everything. That is the mistake we’re not going to commit. We’re going ahead with all of them, we will just assume that the previous administration did the right thing and then we will push ahead, so there will be no hiatus in time for the PPP projects that are already in the pipeline so we’re not going to review them,” he said.

The PPP Center reported 12 awarded PPP projects and 15 other projects in different stages of approval. (Antonio L. Colina IV/MindaNews)