MANILA, Philippines – The Pasay City government announced that their proposal for a P54.5 billion Manila Bay reclamation project, something which was being carried in conjunction with SM Land, would benefit the local government as well as the residents in the area.
Legal officer for the Pasay City Government, Severo Madrona Jr wrote a letter to Peter Abaya, manager of the reclamation authority that the proposed project would need to be funded without receiving assistance from the government.
“Please be clarified that the reclamation project will serve the needs of Pasay City, one of the smallest LGUs in terms of land area in Metro Manila, for much-needed additional residential, business, commercial and institutional areas,” Madrona also acts as the vice chairman of the Selection Committee, a Public Private Partnership from the city government. He said that the reclamation project would be funded by a joint venture with SM Land and conformed to local government code.
“It will also implement the reclamation project without any national financial assistance but utilizing its power to generate its own resources through partnership with the private sector as authorized under the LGC,” The law that he relied on came from Section 17 of the Local Government Code which started that an LGU could pursue a project of this nature provided it was to serve the needs of the inhabitants as well as the people who receive the LGU funds.
He went on to discuss the idea that Pasay City was an authority that had been recognized by both the PRA, the national government, and the National Economic Development Authority when it came to implementing reclamation projects and that this project had to meet the rules laid out by them.
“Thus, the award is subject to all existing rules and regulations that may be imposed by the PRA, NEDA or National Government,”
He continued to state that the city government would meet all of the guidelines laid out by these companies when undertaking the joint venture.
“After the competitive challenge, we will formally submit the project for PRA approval pursuant to the rules and ensure consistency with the terms, location and planned uses of the National Government. For such purpose, we shall also abide and comply with all requirements and specifications that the PRA may impose in the exercise of its regulatory functions, including NEDA approval,”
The Pasay City government has been earlier this year to try and secure a valid legal opinion on the project from both the Local Government, The Department of Interior and the Department of Justice.
The proposal from SM land to develop 300 hectares of land around Manila Bay was unsolicited.
Based on its unsolicited proposal submitted to the Pasay City government, SM Land offered to reclaim and develop approximately 300 hectares of foreshore and onshore areas of Manila Bay located at the western part of the jurisdiction of Pasay City.
The firm has pledged to finance every aspect of the project including the obtaining of permits and clearances required. They will also inject financing to ensure that they comply with all legal requirements laid out by the government.
The project will work as a joint venture agreement with the Pasay City Government. These have the rights to allow reclamation projects under current laws.
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