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MPIC unit obtains P19-B loan for Cebu-Cordova bridge

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A TOLLWAYS subsidiary of the Metro Pacific group sealed another loan deal this month to fund the construction of its bridge project in Cebu City.

Metro Pacific Investments Corp. (MPIC) told the stock exchange on Friday its indirect subsidiary Cebu Cordova Link Expressway Corp. (CCLEC) — which is part of its tollways unit Metro Pacific Tollways Corp. (MPTC) — signed a P19-billion, 15-year term loan facility to support the Cebu-Cordova Link Expressway (CCLEx).

“The loan is secured by a pledge over CCLEC shares and a security interest over certain assets of CCLEC. Proceeds of the loan will be used by CCLEC to fund the construction costs and other project costs of its toll road facility linking Cebu and Cordova with a cable-stayed bridge as part of the facility,” it said.

Last Friday, MPTC Chief Financial Officer Christopher Daniel C. Lizo told reporters the loan deal for CCLEx involved six local banks.

The total project cost of CCLEx is estimated at around P26 billion to P29 billion, including “indirect project costs.”

Commercial operations of the 8.5-kilometer, two-lane toll bridge is targeted to start in 2021. MPTC President Rodrigo E. Franco said in July a maximum of P89 toll fee is eyed at CCLEx.




Once operational, the bridge is expected to reduce travel time from Mactan to Cebu by half, with an initial traffic of 40,000 vehicles a day.

Last week, MPTC subsidiary MPCALA Holdings, Inc. signed a P24.2-billion loan agreement with a different set of lenders for the Cavite-Laguna Expressway (CALAX) project.

The six banks are BDO Unibank, Inc.; UnionBank of the Philippines, Inc.; Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. (RCBC); Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI); Security Bank Corp., and Land Bank of the Philippines.

MPIC is one of the three key Philippine units of Hong Kong-based First Pacific Co. Ltd., the others being Philex Mining Corp. and PLDT, Inc. Hastings Holdings, Inc., a unit of PLDT Beneficial Trust Fund subsidiary MediaQuest Holdings, Inc., has a majority stake in BusinessWorld through the Philippine Star Group, which it controls. — Denise A. Valdez

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