Aquino gov't to sort 'realistic' PPP projects
MANILA – President Benigno Aquino cut short on Wednesday the questioning of journalists about which public–private partnership (PPP) projects could be done by the time he ends his presidency.
Aquino has less than three years left and only three of the more than 10 he promised as legacy have been successfully bid out.
Critics are getting impatient over the pace, but Aquino said that's exactly why he had to end the FOCAP briefing without delay.
"I am scheduled to have meeting and precisely to determine what can be done to accelerate, what will be realizable before I step down, what will be started before I step down, and a whole range of schedules," he said.
Aquino said apart from making sure contracts are clean, PPP projects like the NLEx-SLEx connector have legal kinks.
He's referring to the joint venture between Manuel Pangilinan's Metro Pacific and state-owned Philippine National Construction Corporation (PNCC), which owns the franchise for the two expressways.
"Would an entity not partnered with PNCC be authorized to have a connection with the NLEx and SLEx? That has to be resolved," the President said.
Aquino also said the delays are not entirely government's fault.
"It depends on the PPP project. Some of the bidders themselves asked for an extension on the bidding deadline," Aquino said, referring to the Light Rail Transit Line 1 (LRT-1) and Mactan-Cebu airport projects, among others," he said.
On Wednesday, the government started the bidding process for the P35-billion CALA expressway, a project that will link Cavite and Laguna.
Among the prospective bidders are Pangilinan's Metro Pacific, San Miguel, Ayala Corp. that tied up with Aboitiz, and Malaysian consortium MTD.
The four groups bought bid documents.
Aquino is confident that despite the delay in the PPP, he will still leave a legacy of strong economic growth.