Philippines eyes three loan agreements with China this year

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Groundbreaking ceremony of the Chico River Pump Irrigation Project at Tuao, Cagayan held on August 17, 2017. — Photo: Francis Villanueva Jorque /

The government is looking to sign three loan agreements with China this year, with prospective bidders already lined up to bid for project contracts, the Department of Finance (DoF) said.

Finance Assistant Secretary Maria Edita Z. Tan said the Philippines could secure its first official development assistance (ODA) from Beijing between the “second to third quarter of 2018.”

The first loan line will cover the P2.7-billion Chico River Pump Irrigation project, which will provide water supply to farms in the provinces of Cagayan and Kalinga.

Ms. Tan, who heads the DoF’s International Finance Group, added that grants covering the P10.9-billion New Centennial Water Source-Kaliwa Dam Project and the P151.3-billion Philippine National Railway South Commuter Line are also set to be signed between the third and fourth quarter. — Melissa Luz T. Lopez