Mike Toledo puts spotlight on Philippines’ infrastructure plans at Nomura Investment Forum Asia

The Philippines is well-prepared to welcome a surge of infrastructure investments from the private sector, bolstered by the government’s proactive measures aimed at addressing constraints.

Speaking at the Nomura Investment Forum Asia in Singapore last June 7, Atty. Mike Toledo, director for Government Relations and Public Affairs at Manuel V. Pangilinan-led Metro Pacific Investments Corporation (MPIC), emphasized the government’s pro-active approach in creating an enabling environment for private sector investments.

“In sum, I shared with the attendees that under PBBM’s (President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.) leadership there is a renewed commitment to PPPs (public-private partnership) and the recently passed liberalization laws will support government’s robust infrastructure program,” Toledo said.

Nomura’s annual Asia flagship conference was attended by over 1,000 professional investors from around the world, more than 150 representatives from the most sought after regionally-listed companies in Asia, and over 30 industry experts.

“PBBM ordered the revision of the restrictive IRR of the BOT law. This will allow the mobilization of private sector sources as engines of capital and catalyst for growth,” Toledo said.

Toledo, who also serves as chairman of the Chamber of Mines of the Philippines, highlighted during the conference that the Marcos administration plans to roll out 194 flagship projects amounting to P9 trillion pesos.

He said MPIC, as the premier infrastructure conglomerate, believes infrastructure build up will hasten the country’s recovery from the ravages of the pandemic.

MPIC’s toll road unit Metro Pacific Tollways Corporation, for its part, has several big projects that are game-changers, according to Toledo.

He cited the iconic toll bridge Cebu-Cordova Link Expressway, the NLEX connector road, the Cavite-Laguna Expressway, and the Subic-Clark Expressway as among these projects.

Nomura Global Markets Research in a note dated June 5 said it remains optimistic that infrastructure development will accelerate in the medium term, particularly in countries like India, Indonesia and the Philippines.

It said these countries were able to address issues in underspending, strengthened project monitoring systems, simplified procurement rules, and raised the participation of state-owned enterprises, among others.