By Chino S. Leyco
The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Board’s Investment Coordination Committee-Cabinet Committee (ICC-CabCom) has raised the budget for two infrastructure projects in Mindanao and Metro Manila.
In a statement, NEDA said the ICC-CabCom approved last July 10 the increase in cost for Mindanao railway project phase 1-Tagum-Davao-Digos segment (MRP-TDD) and Metro Manila priority bridges seismic improvement project.
For MRP-TDD, its cost was raised to P82.9 billion from the previously approved P35.9 billion in 2017.
The NEDA said the committee needed to increase the project cost to cover changes in price of “structural and construction works, among others.”
In terms of scope, the ICC-CabCom also approved the additional Davao satellite depot of the MRP-TDD, the NEDA said.
For the Metro Manila’s bridges seismic improvement project, the cost also rose to P7.9 billion from P4.3 billion.
According to the NEDA, the additional budget will cover the changes in construction technology to be applied to the Guadalupe bridge, putting up of temporary detour bridges in the area, and additional work shift to reduce the construction period, among others.
In addition, the implementation extension of one year and eight months until August 2023, inclusive of a one-year defects liability period, will help the project catch up with its target completion date.
The ICC-CabCom also noted the inclusion of the project management consultant with a cost of P14.39 billion, inclusive of value added tax (VAT) and contingencies, in the scope of works for the PNR South Long Haul Project.
“We see changes in scope and cost as opportunities to optimize the project components and update the estimates. The Government aims to speed up implementation while ensuring quality,” Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto M. Pernia said.