$10-B China investment package includes Manila-clark train system
A train system linking Manila to Clark will be one of the projects to be financed under the $24-billion investment package President Duterte brought home from his state visit to China last week.
Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade told reporters on Saturday that his department got “more or less $10 billion” of the investment package. This includes the construction of a train system from Manila to Clark, another interconnecting provinces in Mindanao, as well as the rehabilitation of airports in the country. However, he didn’t elaborate on the other projects included in the package for the Department of Transportation (DOTr).
While plans for the construction of the train systems have yet to be discussed in detail, Tugade said that it was the government’s goal that “projects started under the Duterte administration should be completed before the President’s term ends.”
Tugade added that China would be the “project designer” of the train systems, among other designations.
He clarified, however, that no single project or group could address the traffic congestion in Metro Manila when he was asked what specific project under the investment package could solve the problem in the next two years.
“Various solutions, programs and collaboration are needed to solve that. There’s the BRT (bus rapid transit), P2P (point-to-point service), which can be integrated [to address traffic],” Tugade said.
One of the deals signed during Mr. Duterte’s state visit to China was the memorandum of understanding between the Philippine State Group of Companies and Yangtse Motor Group Ltd. and Minmetals International (HK) Ltd. Under this deal, an initial $100 million will be invested to develop the Manila Edsa bus transportation system, including those in other places.
Meanwhile, in an effort to deploy more personnel to roads in the metropolis, the Interagency Council on Traffic completed on Sunday the training of around 400 volunteers who would help man the inner streets in Quezon City.
Tugade said that the first batch of volunteers would just direct traffic flow since they were not deputized to apprehend erring motorists. He added that the DOTr targets to get at least 4,000 volunteers.
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