IRC Properties, Inc. secured original proponent status from the Makati government for its proposed $3.7-billion intra-city rail transport system.
In a disclosure to the stock exchange on Wednesday, IRC said Makati City has accepted its proposal for a joint venture that seeks to establish and operate the Makati Mass Transport System, an 11-kilometer subway with eight to 10 stations.
The IRC-led consortium, which includes international partners, namely Greenland Holdings Group, Jiangsu Provincial Construction Group Co. Ltd., Holdings Ltd., and China Harbour Engineering Company Ltd., looks to construct the project at no cost to the government.
“IRC’s proposal is aligned with the national government’s aggressive infrastructure program as well as Makati’s goal to be a digital city. Not only will it move people quicker, it will allow people to be more productive and spend more time with their families. The project will also create thousands of jobs and reduce the carbon footprint due to lesser cars on the streets,” IRC Chief Operating Officer and Executive Vice-President Georgina A. Monsod said in a statement.
The project will also be interconnected with the Metro Rail Transit-Line 3, the proposed Metro Manila Mega Subway, and Pasig River Ferry.
IRC’s consortium partners are firms that have experience in the construction of railway systems. It described Greenland as a publicly listed real estate firm at the Shanghai Stock Exchange, which has recently acquired the subway and rail transport systems in Jiangsu province.
Greenland owns and operates the Nanjing subway line 5 in China alongside Jiangsu Provincial Construction Group. The project also followed the public private partnership model.
Kwan On Holdings is engaged in construction and maintenance works on civil engineering contracts, while Shanghai MinTu’s core business is in infrastructure, mass transportation, and financial services.
China Harbour Engineering Company meanwhile is a contractor of the Hong Kong mass transit railway, and constructed a portion of the Malaysia rail system that included subways.
IRC’s Makati project will have to undergo a Swiss Challenge where other groups are allowed to submit their own proposals. IRC has the right to match the best offer by a group since it is the original proponent.
IRC, which appointed Antonio L. Tiu as president and CEO in May, recently applied to increase its authorized capital stock to P10.5 billion from P1.5 billion in order to fund future projects.
The company’s attributable profit grew almost five times to P25.4 million in the first quarter of 2018, following a 47% increase in revenues to P75.2 million.
Shares in IRC surged 20.35% or 23 centavos to close at P1.36 each at the stock exchange on Wednesday, bucking the downward trajectory of the main index. — Arra B. Francia