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PIA Press Release

NEDA ICC-CABCOM approves three social and infra projects

Davao City (25 February) -- The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Investment Coordination Committee-Cabinet Committee (ICC-CC) recently approved three projects that are aimed to improve local communities through increased infrastructure and social projects.

Approved were the Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan ? Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (KALAHI-CIDSS): Operation for Barangay and Municipal Action project, the Secondary National Road Development Project (SNRDP), both with grant financing from the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), and the improvement of the Aurora Memorial Hospital in Baler, Aurora.

The KALAHI-CIDSS-MCC project amounting to US$168.5 million is an expansion program of the KALAHI-CIDSS within Luzon and Visayas. It is geared towards empowering local communities through improved participation in local governance and involvement in the design and implementation of poverty reduction projects.

The project consists of capacity building and implementation support, barangay grants, and project management and monitoring and evaluation. Also, it will cover 4,439 barangays and 193 municipalites in Luzon and Visayas. These municipalities belong to the 50 percent poorest in their respective provinces and with at least 40 percent poverty incidence.

On the other hand, the SNRDP, that will construct a connection of roads across the cities of Catbalogan and Borongan in the province of Samar, will have a total length of 221 kilometers. It will cost a total of US$232.44 million and also involves rehabilitation or upgrading of existing roads.

The SNRDP aims to increase the efficiency of road transportation in Eastern Samar, provide good connection to central Samar, and promote tourism development in the area. NEDA noted that improvement in welfare and poverty reduction can be expected if basic infrastructure like the SNRDP will be developed in the province.

The MCC, a United States Government corporation, was established in 2004 that works on the "principle that aid is most effective when it reinforces good governance, economic freedom and investments in people." Its mission is to reduce global poverty by promoting sustainable economic growth.

The NEDA ICC-CC also approved the improvement of the Aurora Memorial Hospital in Baler, Aurora. It includes the construction of a new complex for the hospital, procurement of new equipment and facilities, and site development that will cost at an estimated PhP 595.13 million.

The project is in response to the increasing maternal deaths in the area of Aurora compared to the rest of central Luzon.

It also aims to increase the number of medical and health professionals in Aurora and nearby provinces, the hospital's bed capacity, and to be able to offer midwifery and BS Nursing courses in Baler in collaboration with UP Manila School of Health Science. The project is a proposed Japanese Government assistance under its Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) Grant Aid Program.

Meanwhile, the ICC approved the request for increase in cost by PhP 107.38 million for the Northrail-Southrail Linkage Project, Phase I (NSLP 1), including an increase in the supplemental loan amount by US$0.33 Million from US$15 Million to US$15.33 Million, The ICC likewise approved the final nine-month extension of loan validity for the project from March 29, 2010 to December 29, 2010. The project covers the south line of the Philippine National Railways (PNR) from Caloocan to Alabang.

On the other hand the ICC approved the proposed increase in cost by PhP1,586.63 Million for the Northrail-Southrail Linkage Project, Phase II (NSLP 2) to finance some project changes which were recommended during the Korean Government's Appraisal Mission. The proposed project changes were approved subject to submission of ICC requisite documents and clarification of some issues by PNR. NSLP 2 covers the south line from Alabang to Calamba. (NEDA) [top]

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