Davao to seek Arab investors for LRT

BY JOANNA C. BALANZA

     The multi-billion peso proposed Davao City Light Rail Transit (LRT) project is among big-ticket investments that will seek foreign funders in a major business congress in the Middle East.

     This even as a South Korean company has already expressed  intention to pursue the project that has been subject of its own feasibility study.

     The proposed LRT is among 12 major projects that will be opened to foreign investors in the Annual Investment Meeting (AIM) Congress 2015 fron March 30 to April 1 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Davao City Investment Promotion Center (DCIPC) head Ivan Cortez said.

The LRT is among eight projects under the government’s Public-Private Partnership (PPP) program.

Six of the eight projects  that will be covered by PPP arrangement with the Davao City government are the construction of a government center, LRT system, a waste-to-energy project, theme park and roll-on roll-off connectivity loading facility.

The PPP projects to be handled by the national government through the Department of Transportation and Communication (DoTC) are the F. Bangoy International Airport rehabilitation project and the Sasa  Port Modernization project, said Cortez.

Four other projects – a halal slaughter house, halal hub or Islamic Center, city hospital and an Islamic University – will seek grants from Arab nations during the Dubai investors’ congress.

Cortez said a DCIPC team to include local businessmen will be joining a national delegation to the

congress that will be held at the Dubai international Convention and Exhibition Center.

     The Korean Engineering Company (KEC) is now conducting a study on the LRT after securing an agreement with the local government. KEC said it would help in seeking fund for the project from lending institutions like the Asian Development Bank.

     Last year, the DoTC said it has mapped out a P50 billion program for the rehabilitation and development of the Sasa Wharf and the Davao international airport.

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