PPP Code speeds up approval process, implementation of infra projects

By Leslie Gatpolintan

May 19, 2024, 8:29 pm

BAGUIO CITY – The government targets to award five public-private partnership (PPP) projects worth PHP50.57 billion by the end of 2024 and three more by next year, as the new law and its implementing rules and regulations (IRR) have helped fast-track the approval process and implementation of infrastructure projects in the country.

In an interview with the Philippine News Agency over the weekend, PPP Center deputy executive director Jeffrey Manalo said Republic Act No. 11966 or the PPP Code and its IRR have set deadlines for various government agencies to review and approve the projects.

“Even to transmit documents from one government agency to another, the law provided a deadline. So on that note, the process is more predictable. Delays in decision-making will be addressed because everyone has a deadline. Even the NEDA (National Economic and Development Authority) Board has a deadline to approve PPP projects,” he said on the sidelines of a business journalism seminar hosted by the Economic Journalists Association of the Philippines and San Miguel Corp.

Manalo said when reaching the tender phase, “you are always a day closer” to project implementation as the bidding process already has a schedule.

He said the law now requires PPP projects to secure approval in 120 calendar days, or just four months from the previous 18 months when the PPP Code was not yet signed into law.

“At kung hindi aakyat ng NEDA Board ‘yung project, mas mabilis -- 90 days (And if these PPP project proposals may not be submitted to the NEDA Board for approval, it will be faster at 90 days). That’s three months,” he added.

The PPP Code of the Philippines was signed into law on Dec. 5, 2023.

The IRR took effect on April 6, 2024.

Manalo further said with the PPP Code, there are now more projects, including those submitted during the previous administration, moving toward their next phases.

Project phases include procurement, negotiation, approval and preparation.

Manalo said five projects that are in more advanced stages of the PPP process include the PHP23.4-billion Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway Extension Project; PHP12.75-billion Upgrade, Expansion, Operations, and Maintenance of Laguindingan Airport Project in Northern Mindanao; PHP9.49-billion UP-PGH (University of the Philippines-Philippine General Hospital) Cancer Center Project; PHP4.53-billion New Bohol International Airport; and PHP400-million Dialysis Center PPP Project for the Renal Center Facility of the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center.

He said projects targeted to be awarded by the end of this year or next year are the PHP1.2-billion Negros Occidental Bulk Water Supply Project; and the PHP710-million Bislig City Bulk Water Supply and PHP80-million Biglig City Septage Project in Surigao del Sur.

The projects are among the 125 worth PHP3 trillion that the PPP Center currently has in the pipeline. (PNA)