Philippines, ADB sign £1bn loan deal for Malolos–Clark Railway Project


Asian Development Bank (ADB) has signed a $1.3bn (£1bn) loan agreement with the Philippines government for the $6.1bn (£4.8bn) Malolos–Clark Railway Project.

The deal represents the first tranche of the total $2.75bn (£2.1bn) financing facility which was approved by ADB in May 2019 for the Malolos–Clark Railway Project.

The project calls for the construction of 53.1km of a railway line connecting Malolos, a suburb north of Manila, to Clark economic zone and Clark International Airport in Central Luzon.

ADB vice-president Ahmed Saeed said: “Our work in the Philippines has always held a special place in the history of ADB. Now, under President Duterte’s ‘Build, Build, Build’ infrastructure program, ADB is considerably scaling up its own support to the government.

“The Malolos–Clark Railway Project is ADB’s single largest infrastructure project financing ever at $2.75 billion. We are pleased to be supporting this important flagship project in our host country.”

The Malolos–Clark Railway Project forms part of the Philippine government’s North-South Commuter Railway (NSCR) project.

The NSCR project is a 163km suburban railway network between New Clark City in Tarlac province in the north and Calamba in Laguna province in the south of Manila and is expected to be completed by 2025.

Planned to be operational from 2022, the Malolos-Clark Railway project is intended to provide safe, reliable and affordable public transport for 342,000 passengers expected to travel daily along the Manila-Clark corridor and up to 696,000 passengers per day to Calamba by 2025.

In addition to reducing travel time from Metro Manila to Clark International Airport, the project will ease chronic road congestion in Metro Manila, minimise air pollution, reduce transportation and logistics costs and spur economic growth in central Luzon.

Image: ADB vice-president Ahmed Saeed with Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte and Philippine Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III. Photo: courtesy of Asian Development Bank.

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