Home » Customs & Trade » Government earmarks P739B for infra spending

The Bureau of Customs (BOC) last week implemented a reshuffle of top personnel.

In her keynote speech during the Supply Chain Management Association of the Philippines (SCMAP) logistics conference and exhibit last week at the EDSA Shangri-La, Transport undersecretary Anneli Lontoc said the government is allotting P739 billion for infrastructure projects.

At least 80 projects have been identified, with eight to 10 ready for implementation as early as next year.

“We are boosting our infrastructure since the Philippines lags behind our counterparts in Asia and we are targeting spending about 5% of our gross domestic product instead of just 3%,” Lontoc said.

“The projects are also in preparation for the integration of economies within the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (especially in the areas of) transport, customs and trade,” she added.

“We are also trying to maintain our ranking in the World Bank survey on infrastructure to be at par with our counterparts.”

In the 2010 World Bank survey on logistics performance index, the Philippines placed 64th when it came to infrastructure with a score of 2.57. (The scores are from one to five, one being the worst performance.)

In 2007, the country ranked 65th but had a slight higher score on infrastructure of 2.69.

In comparison, Malaysia scored 3.50; Thailand, 3.16; and China, 3.54 in the 2010 infrastructure index.

The first eight to 10 infrastructure projects carry a price tag of P127 billion and are under the Public-Private Partnership (PPP) scheme. PPP is a strategy of the Aquino administration to finance government projects like infrastructure and basic services through the assistance of the private sector.

The projects include: the continued interconnection of the Light Rail Transit (LRT) system with the Metro Rail Transit; implementation of Phase 2 of the LRT project; upgrade of the new Bohol Airport; Puerto Princesa Airport; North Luzon and South Luzon Expressways link; new Daraga Airport; construction of a City Terminal at the Diosdado Macapagal International Airport; and privatization of the Laguindingan Airport in Misamis Oriental.

In addition, the Department of Transportation and Communications is eyeing the consolidation of all transportation agencies under one body to improve monitoring and efficiency.

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