NEDA Secretary Arsenio M. Balisacan
Fourth NEDA Board Meeting
March 9, 2023
Media Briefer Daphne Paez,
Members of the Malacañang Press Corps,
I am pleased to announce that the National Economic and Development Authority Board, chaired by President Ferdinand Romualdez Marcos, Jr., during its fourth meeting today, approved two game-changing initiatives that aim to further raise investments and transform the Philippine economic landscape. These are the government’s new list of Infrastructure Flagship Projects or IFPs and the Amendments to the 2013 NEDA Joint Venture or JV Guidelines.
On the New List of Infrastructure Flagship Projects
The approved new list of Infrastructure Flagship Projects includes a total of 194 projects amounting to about nine trillion pesos. Majority of these infrastructure flagship projects are in physical connectivity and water resources, which include projects in irrigation, water supply, and flood management. The list also includes projects in digital connectivity, health, power and energy, agriculture, and other infrastructure.
Some of the new projects include in the new list are the Panay Railway Project, Mindanao Railway Project III, North Long Haul Railway, San Mateo Railway, UP-PGH Diliman Project, the NAIA or Ninoy Aquino International Airport Rehabilitation Project, Ilocos Sur Transbasin Project, and the Metro Cebu Expressway.
Aligned with the priorities under the 8-Point Socioeconomic Agenda of President Marcos’ Administration and the plans outlined in the Philippine Development Plan for 2023-2028, these high-impact and urgently-needed infrastructure projects aim to showcase the government’s Build-Better-More program. The new IFPs are seen to address the binding constraints to business investment and expansion that will create more, high-quality, and resilient jobs that will allow us to meet our poverty-reduction goals for the medium term.
IFPs shall be prioritized under the government’s annual budget preparation and enjoy the benefits of expedited issuance of applicable permits and licenses consistent with current legal frameworks. These projects will adopt an optimal mix of financing from various development partners, that is ODA, the national government, that is General Appropriations, and the private sector, particularly Public-Private Partnerships.
To hasten the rollout of these projects, the Marcos Administration is strongly promoting the utilization of public-private partnerships or PPPs, one of the cross-cutting strategies likewise identified in the Philippine Development Plan 2023-2028. Forty-five (45) of these IFPs are seen to be financed through partnerships with the private sector. The government shall harness the financial and technical resources of the private sector, which allows the public sector to allocate its funds for greater investments in human capital development, especially to address the scarring in health and education due to the pandemic and provide targeted assistance that protects vulnerable sectors from economic shocks.
To ensure the quality and timeliness of project execution, the NEDA Board designated NEDA as the lead agency that will monitor the implementation of the IFPs as part of its program monitoring function pursuant to Executive Order No. 230. The list of IFPs will be posted publicly on the NEDA website and social media accounts for your reference.
On the Amendments to the 2013 NEDA Joint Venture Guidelines
Second, the NEDA Board approved the proposed amendments to the 2013 NEDA Joint Venture Guidelines. The NEDA will process the issuance of the revised JV Guidelines in accordance with Section 8 of Executive Order 423, Series of 2005.
The amendments aim to enhance competition for projects under joint ventures, ensure better performance of private-sector participants, and improve checks and balances to ensure that the project is technically and financially sound. The amendments shall also ensure that the guidelines are aligned with the provisions of the recently amended Build-Operate-Transfer or BOT Law Implementing Rules and Regulations and the proposed amendments to the BOT Law or PPP Act pending in Congress, but which are expected to be passed by this year.
The Marcos Administration’s thrust for infrastructure shall enable the transformation of the Philippine economic landscape within the next six years. Recognizing that our country has much work to do to catch up with our dynamic neighbors in the region, we will pursue high-impact initiatives that aim to encourage greater local and foreign investment and private-sector participation in infrastructure development.
Today’s approval of the new IFP list and the amendments to the NEDA JV guidelines is a giant step toward our goal of elevating our competitiveness as we promote the Philippines as a prime investment destination in the region. We will connect and integrate markets to enable access to more opportunities for local industries, enhance the productivity of our young and vibrant labor force, and create safer infrastructure for future generations. Ultimately, we wish to improve the overall quality of life for all Filipinos and empower every citizen to live a matatag, maginhawa, at panatag na buhay.