(Davao City, 22 November 2023). The Infrastructure Development Committee (IDC) XI convened for its 4th Quarter CY 2023 Regular Meeting on 22 November 2023 at the NEDA-RDC XI Convention Center, SPED Area, Bangkal, Davao City.

DCBCP Project Manager Antonio Erwin Aranaz of DPWH presenting their request for Extension of Loan Validity and Implementation Period, and Additional Supplemental Loan

The RDC XI Secretary and NEDA XI Assistant Regional Director Gilberto A. Altura, acting as the designated Presiding Officer, welcomed the participants to the meeting. He informed the participants that on 10 November 2023, NEDA Secretary, Dr. Arsenio M. Balisacan, and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) Philippines Chief Representative Sakamoto Takema signed the Record of Discussions (ROD) for the Formulation of the Comprehensive and Sustainable Urban Development Master Plan for Metropolitan Davao which is something to be excited about as the said Project shall formulate a Master Plan, together with the Local Government Units comprising Metropolitan Davao, that will ensure the sustainable urban development of the Metropolitan Davao area.

The Committee recommended the endorsement of the RDC XI to the NEDA Board–Investment Coordination Committee (ICC), the request of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) for Extension of Loan Validity and Implementation Period of Loan Agreement Nos. PH-P261 and PH-273, and Additional Supplemental Loan for the Davao City Bypass Construction Project. The request does not involve a change in scope, rather, an increase in project cost driven by the increase of prices of commodities such as steel and crude oil, as well as, land acquisition cost.

The Committee also endorsed for RDC XI approval, the Region’s infrastructure sector performance for CY 2023 through the CY 2023 Regional Development Report (RDR) cum Davao Regional Development Plan (DRDP), 2023-2028 Results Matrices Progress Report covering 3 chapters and sub-chapters of the Davao Regional Development Plan (DRDP), 2023-2028, namely:

  • Sub-Chapter 4.3: Establish Livable Communities;
  • Chapter 13: Expand and Upgrade Infrastructure; and
  • Chapter 17 on Davao Region’s vision to be An International Logistics Hub of Southern Philippines.

The Committee then discussed the request of the Philippine Reclamation Authority (PRA) to be a member of the IDC XI. The PRA is engaging all RDCs nationwide for it to be informed of the infrastructure projects of the government especially those with reclamation components. The Committee endorsed the PRA request for RDC XI approval.

The Provincial Government of Davao Oriental also presented a Position Paper on Energy Concerns/Issues in the Province highlighting the seemingly unresolved concern on poor power situation in the Province of Davao Oriental. As agreed during the meeting, the Provincial Government of Davao Oriental will submit its enhanced position paper after the conduct of their Power Summit on 11 December 2023, for further deliberation of the Committee.

Moreover, the IDC XI recommended for RDC XI support, RDC VII Resolution No. 51 (s. 2023) “Enjoining the LGUs, National Government Entities, Businesses, Academic Institutions and the Private Sector in Central Visayas to Support the Green Energy Option Program (GEOP) as a Measure to Accelerate Climate Action” as this supports a strategy identified in the Davao Regional Development Plan (DRDP) 2023-2028, particularly Chapter 13: Expand and Upgrade Infrastructure, that is, to ensure affordable, reliable and sustainable power supply and distribution.

The Committee then discussed matters arising from 2 bodies created under the IDC XI. On the Technical Working Group (TWG) on Establishing Davao Region as the Logistics Hub of Southern Philippines TWG, the Committee endorsed for RDC XI approval, the Enhanced Strategy Framework for Chapter 17: Davao Region: An International Logistics Hub of Southern Philippines of the Davao Regional Development Plan (DRDP), 2023-2028” and the Strategy Framework for the Davao Region Logistics Cluster which shall guide the TWG’s future activities, including the Action Plan for the Formulation of the Roadmap on Establishing Davao Region as the  Logistics Hub of Southern Philippines. On the Sub-Committee on the Davao Regional Government Center, the Committee requested RDC XI to enjoin the DENR XI, PCA XI, NCIP XI to streamline the processes in securing the required documents to fast track the issuance of permits/certification relative to the construction of government buildings in the Davao RGC.

Lastly, a regular item in IDC XI quarterly meetings is the “Implementation Updates on Ongoing Major Infrastructures Projects in Davao Region”. The IDC XI members were apprised of implementation updates on major infrastructures projects in Davao Region, to wit: projects attributed to the modernization of the Davao International Airport (DIA), the Davao City Public Transportation Modernization Project (DPTMP) and the Samal Island-Davao Connector (SIDC).

The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) reported its ongoing project for the Improvement of the Passenger Terminal Building (PTB) which is targeted to be completed by February 28, 2024 and the pipelined project for the Expansion of the PTB which is currently undergoing the procurement process. The expansion of the PTB will allow the current PTB to exclusively cater to domestic flights as it will exclusively cater international flights.

On the DPTMP, Civil Works Packages 1,2 and 3 for the depots, terminals, bus stops and the driving school was awarded to the Chinese International Water and Electric Corporation on October 6, 2023. The DPTMP-Project Management Office shall be engaging the DPWH and the City Government of Davao for the preparation of a Memorandum of Understanding to ensure complementation of upcoming projects in Davao City.

On the SIDC, the DPWH-UPMO reported that the Detailed Engineering Design (DED) Phase of the Design-and-Build Contract is at 83.91% but is currently suspended effective 3 January 2023 due to the prevailing issues on Right-of-Way (ROW). The revised DED for the foundations of the land viaduct sections of the project are currently being reviewed by the DPWH-Bureau of Design.

The Committee shall continue to closely monitor the Davao Region’s performance of the infrastructure sector as targeted in the DRDP Results Matrices, 2023-2028, as well as, the implementation of crucial infrastructure projects in the Region, especially those identified priorities under the present Administration’s Build Better More (BBM) Program.

-Emil B. Clarito