13 Aug P900 Billion Budget for Infrastructure Development In Mindanao should be Reconsidered
On August 12, Friday, president and chief executive officer of SMC-Global Power Holdings Corp. Alan Ortiz called the Duterte administration to readjust its P900-billion budget and focus its infrastructure development program on Mindanao. This is for Mindanao to open accessibility with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations region.
Power and water; transportation; housing and human resources; the internet and defense and security should be the priorities for the infrastructure program, Ortiz suggested.
Ortiz stated, “We need a national program that I call an Asean pivot. All our policies, all our energies must focus on Mindanao because it is closest to the Asean region.”
Ortiz elaborated the key sectors of the program.
Power, Ortiz said completing the Agus system to increase the hydropower output to 600 megawatts and cleansing Pulangui river to increase the output from 25 MW to 200 MW.
For water, passing the national water act is a must to regulate public-private collaboration in the development of water reservoir and distribution systems on the island.
Ortiz explained the housing and human development, saying that a mass housing program for officers and employees in new industrial parks should commence.
To supply the labor requirements of industrial parks, new enterprises, and rapidly growing communities, the government should promote STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) schools in Mindanao.
The government should enhance Mindanao army camps, naval yards, and air force bases for the improvement of defense and security across the island.
For the internet sector, the coverage National Broadband Network to all corners of Mindanao should be extended.
And lastly, for the transportation, international airport and seaport standards and pushing through the Mindanao railway system should be promoted, enhanced and upgraded.