APAC: Philippines budgets USD 17bn for infrastructure

24 July 2018 - 12:00 am UTC

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has proposed PHP 909.7bn (USD 17bn) infrastructure spending in his national budget for 2019, submitted to Congress on Monday (23 July).

The allocation to the Build, Build, Build program makes up 24.2% of the total PHP 3.757trn national budget and represents 4.7% of gross domestic product (GDP).

The budget includes PHP 555.7bn for the Department of Public Works and Highways’ (DPWH), with PHP 113.3bn of this to be spent on network development including widening 778.8km of roads.

Meanwhile, the Department of Transportation’s (DOTr) budget was set at of PHP 76.1bn, almost double last year’s PHP 35.9bn. This includes PHP 24.6bn to fund various railway projects and PHP 2.2bn to improve airports’ safety and on time performance.

While the Philippines is mostly relying on official development assistance (ODA) to fund big ticket projects, Duterte highlighted the government’s major infrastructure investments for 2019 in his budget message, namely:

– PHP 25.2bn for the 35km Metro Manila Subway phase one, from Mindanao Avenue in Quezon City to Ninoy Aquino International Airport;

– PHP 4.6bn for the 56km Philippine National Railways South Commuter project from Solis, Tondo in Manila to Los Banos, Laguna;

– PHP 14.04bn for the 38km PNR North 1 rail project connecting Malolos, Bulacan to Tutuban, Manila;

– PHP 282m for the New Cebu International Container Port project, which will be built on a 25 hectare reclaimed island in Consolacion, Cebu;

– PHP 2.9bn for the Mindanao Railway project;

– PHP 500m for Siargao Airport, on the island province of Surigao del Norte;

– PHP 315m for Davao Airport.

The budget assumes 7% to 8% GDP growth this year, up from 6.7% in 2017 and 6.9% the year earlier.

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