MVP Group of Companies, Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), and religious group Iglesia ni Cristo have partnered to complete a 300-bed coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) quarantine center at the Philippine Arena in Bulacan, NLEX Corp. said.

“Under the leadership of DPWH Secretary Mark A. Villar and Chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan, the latest large-scale health and safety initiative made available by the Iglesia Ni Cristo in Ciudad de Victoria, Bocaue, Bulacan, will be completed on schedule by Wednesday, April 29, as part of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte’s Bayanihan to Heal as One Act,” NLEX Corp. said in a statement on Tuesday.

The quarantine center intended for returning overseas Filipino workers will be turned over to the Inter Agency Task Force on COVID-19 (IATF) medical teams once completed, NLEX Corp. added.

Mr. Pangilinan, who heads the business group, was quoted as saying: “This is another testament to the effective collaboration among the public and private sectors. Our group will continue to support the government’s COVID-19 emergency response programs and help the country recover from this pandemic. During this health crisis, everyone must pitch in.”

Metro Pacific Tollways Corp. (MPTC) and NLEX Corp. also vowed to provide “special and exclusive access” along the North Luzon Expressway to the Philippine Arena quarantine center for the IATF quarantine teams and medical support groups.

NLEX Corp. said the North Luzon Expressway will be toll-free for medical frontliners, ambulances, medical service vans and buses of the Health department.

The center will be managed by the government with personnel from the Health department, Armed Forces, and the National Police, NLEX Corp. said.

“The MVP Group is the country’s leading conglomerate of infrastructure utilities with diverse assets in power, electricity distribution, water supply, logistics, tollways operations and management, telecommunications and digital services,” it also noted.

NLEX Corp. is under MPTC., a unit of Metro Pacific Investments Corp., which is one of the three Philippine units of Hong Kong-based First Pacific Co. Ltd. The two others are PLDT, Inc. and Philex Mining Corp.

Hastings Holdings, Inc., a unit of PLDT Beneficial Trust Fund subsidiary MediaQuest Holdings, Inc., maintains interest in BusinessWorld through the Philippine Star Group, which it controls. — Arjay L. Balinbin