A BILL establishing a one-stop shop for priority infrastructure projects has been filed at the House of Representatives.
House Bill No. 8755, authored by Quirino Rep. Dakila Carlo E. Cua, intends to fast-track infrastructure project planning and construction. “The one-stop shop facility shall facilitate all necessary procedures and communications with all relevant implementing agencies, government agencies, and contractors,” Mr. Cua said in an explanatory note.
The office, to be led by a project manager who will be appointed by the President with the rank of undersecretary, will prepare timetables for priority infrastructure projects, monitor and ensure related activities follow their respective timetables, facilitate processes and securing of requirements from all relevant state agencies, acquire right of way including through exercise of power of eminent domain, serve as contractors’ contact when dealing with state offices, and recommend actions to the President to resolve bottlenecks and other issues hindering project progress.
Sought for comment, Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry Chairman George T. Barcelon said in a telephone interview: “I think we need an agency to prioritize what are the infrastructure projects that would be most beneficial.”
“It’s very important that there are regional developments, such as farm-to-market roads, irrigation projects and maybe with an agency like that, they can be more responsive to some of the needs of the other regions.”
The government has embarked on an infrastructure program that will see some P8 trillion spent till 2022, when President Rodrigo R. Duterte ends his six-year term. — C. A. Tadalan