The Asian Development Bank has again opened its coffers to the Philippines
in furtherance of the country's ambitious infrastructure goals. ADB has
announced that the Philippines can get as much as US$3.8 billion in loans
and more from its non-lending financing arm in Manila.
The Asian Development Bank announced that it has opened loans and
non-lending programs for the country. This is to boost the Philippines plan
to accelerate public spending on infrastructure and social services. Apart
from the US$3.8 billion in loans, the Philippines can tap another $21.8
million in non-lending financing from its Manila bank. This was disclosed
by the International Finance Group to Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez.
This funding falls under the ADB's Country Operations Business Plan or COBP
which will focus on priority areas of the Duterte Administration.
47.4% of the total funding support of $1.8 bill will be earmarked for
infrastructure. $1.5 billion or 39.5% will go to education and skills
development, access to finance, expanded social services and employment
opportunities for the youth. The balance of $500 million is for programs on
good governance and finance.
The timeline for this is from 2018 to 2020. There are some infrastructure
projects that ADB is considering to co-finance with the Japan International
Cooperation Agency or JICA. These include the proposed PNR Malolos-Clark
Railway and the PNR capacity and readiness in handling as well as financing
infrastructure projects especially the construction of our railways.
The Philippines has requested for quarterly meetings with ADB to make sure
that ADB's country partnership strategy is aligned with the current
administration's strategies. ADB has agreed to this request.
Meanwhile, additional projects that ADB's Country Operations Business Plans
may cover are the Central Spine Roll-on/Roll-off or RoRo project and the
Mindanao River Basin Flood Control Project. ADB has also pledged to design
a $300 million critical infrastructure initiatives package. This is in
conjunction with other financing institutions such as the Asian
Infrastructure Investment Bank and the Agency Francaise de Development.