Home » Maritime » Gov’t has poor showing in infra projects

ONLY five or about 22% of the 23 road projects committed by President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo in her State of the Nation Address (SONA) will be completed before she steps down in June, according to the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH).

The agency said some projects took a backseat to others deemed more important.

A DPWH report said five road projects, mostly in Luzon, will be 90% complete by June. These include those in the Mountain Province such as the 95.3-kilometer Halsema Highway, 108-kilomerter Bontoc-Tabuk-Tuguegarao Road, and the 27.27-kilometer Baler, Aurora-Casiguran Road.

In the Luzon Urban Beltway, DPWH completed the 120.6-kilometer Tarlac-Nueva-Ecija-Aurora-Dingalan Port and the 109-kilometer Marikina-Infanta road project.

The build-operate-transfer as well as flood control projects, specifically 18 SONA projects in Visayas and Mindanao totaling to P44.2 billion, will be 80% complete by June.

DPWH’s current focus is on the expansion of Circumferential 5 in Quezon City and Valenzuela, which will link the North Luzon Expressway and the North Luzon East Expressway.

The agency is also set to complete a feasibility study for the proposed P39.19-billion Circumferential 6 Road Projects. The study is being funded by Korea International Cooperation Agency and Japan External Trade Organization.

Projects which will not be completed by the time the President steps down in June include road infrastructure in Palawan linking the Rio Tuba mine, Cebu North Coastal Road Project, and the P1.19 billion Silay Airport Access Road.

This year, DPWH has allotted about 90% or P86.446 billion out of its P96.6-billion budget for infrastructure projects largely to complete the administration’s 10 point agenda.

Of the infrastructure budget, P72.072 billion has been allocated for locally-funded projects and P14.374 for foreign-assisted projects.

Under foreign-assisted projects, P5.565 billion is considered counterpart funding and P8.809 billion, the foreign component.

Another P6.631 billion has been allocated for maintenance and other operating expenses, with P6.225 billion going to infrastructure and facilities.

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