Diokno: PH to see 'golden age' of infrastructure building

MANILA, Philippines – "The next 6 years will be the golden age of Philippine construction."

Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno remarked on Wednesday, July 20, that the Philippines will see this golden age of construction due to government ramp-ups of infrastructure projects.

According to Diokno, the projects will be rolled out "simultaneously and not sequentially" in all regions, adding that major government construction projects will be done full-time, 24/7.

President Rodrigo Duterte campaigned on a promise of reducing crime, solving traffic and running after drug lords. The previous Aquino administration was criticized for its slow action on infrastructure and traffic woes.

Diokno has said that the Duterte administration plans to spend P890.9 billion for infrastructure projects across the country next year. This would include airports, bridges, farm-to-market roads, post-harvest facilities, and seaports, and will be equivalent to 5.2% of the gross domestic product (GDP) of the country.

Diokno earlier mentioned that the infrastructure-to GDP ratio could increase to 7%, depending on effects of the proposed tax reform program. However, he added that it will take 10 years of "continuous buildup" of projects in order to manage the infrastructure gap of the country.

"Right now, we have the MRT, LRT, LRT2, and then we have the MRT 7. Maybe (eventually) we will need 3 or 4 more lines, and then we need the PNR modernized," he said.

"The airport, within the year, we have to make up our minds, we have to decide where it will be. Clark or Sangley. I think those are the options, unless someone will come up with unsolicited advice. In the meantime, there should be a dedicated highway from Clark to Makati, I think that's possible," he added. – Rappler.com