Philippines: Heavy infra buildup to fuel up to 9% Philippine growth

  • During a forum on infrastructure development at the ASEAN Business and Investment Summit, Ayala Corp. CEO Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala said the consumption-based Philippine economy could be transformed into an investment-driven one, if adequate infrastructure is in place.
  • The domestic economy, he said, has to sustain a growth of up to 9% annually for growth to be more equitable. To do this, the country has to invest heavily in infrastructure.
  • As funding remains a concern for infrastructure in the country and within the region, business leaders and multilateral development institutions urged ASEAN member-states to allow greater private sector participation in their infrastructure buildup to plug a USD60bn financing gap within the region and implement projects faster.
  • Enrique Razon, chairman and CEO of port giant International Container Terminal Services Inc., said connective infrastructure that immediately builds up capacity to service the needs of the growing economy must be undertaken immediately.
  • Implementing smaller connective infrastructure such as airports, roads and railways in secondary cities and provinces are also equally important as pursuing big-ticket ones as it will immediately contribute to attaining inclusive growth in the region, he added.
  • Philippine economic managers recently said the government will award more big-ticket projects to the private sector on the condition that these projects are of good quality and can match the speed of execution of projects implemented using government funds and official development assistance (ODA).
  • The government will be accepting unsolicited proposals for large infrastructure projects but would demand that these projects break ground within a minimum of 18 months and would be subject to conditions such as non-provision of subsidies or guarantees.

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