Travel time from QC to NAIA to be reduced to 35 minutes
MANILA, Philippines – Japan and the Philippines signed the loan deal last Feb. 10 for 253.3-B yen (PHP112.1 B) to be used for the Metro Manila Subway Project Phase 1.
This is the second tranche assistance loan from Japan, with the first tranche signed last March 2018 for a budget of 104.53-B yen (PHP47.58 B).
For the signing, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) was represented by Chief Representative Eigo Azukizawa, and the Philippine Government was represented by Department of Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III.
H.E. Ambassador Kazuhiko Koshikawa, DOTr Undersecretary for Railways Timothy John Batan, and Philippine National Railways (PNR) General Manager Junn Magno served as witnesses to the signing.
“The Metro Manila Subway was first planned in the 1970s, but it remained a plan for about half a century. Through the strong push and determination of the Duterte administration, this ‘Project of the Century’ is now steadily progressing. I am pleased that our tunnel boring machine will soon start excavating under the Metro Manila area in the 2nd quarter of this year,” Koshikawa stated.
Koshikawa, the Ambassador of Japan to the Philippines, added that he is optimistic that this Metro Manila Subway Project will serve as “one driving force” to revitalize the Philippine economy.
“Filipinos can count on Japan to continuously extend our utmost support until this project is successfully completed,” he said.
The subway is expected to be completed by November 2027.
According to the press release by the Department of Transportation, this assistance loan has a reasonable 0.10% interest per annum, with 40 years for repayment, and a grace period of 12 years.
The 33 kilometer subway will run from Barangay Ugong in Valenzuela in the north, to NAIA Terminal Terminal 3 and FTI in the south.
With its availability, it is expected that the current one hour and 30 minutes travel time between Quezon City to NAIA will be drastically reduced to 35 minutes.
During the first year of its operations, the Metro Manila Subway is expected to accommodate approximately 370,000 passengers per day, and targets to increase its capacity to serve 1 million passengers per day at later years of operations.
The Metro Manila subway would be the Philippines’ first fully underground railway system, and aims to address the traffic congestion in NCR and the rising demand for faster and comfortable public transportation.
Sources: Philippine News Agency, CNN Philippines, DOTR Website