Asian Development Bank (ADB) along with Philippines’ National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) and Department of Finance (DOF) have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) stating $7.1 billion sovereign lending program to the Philippines from 2019 to 2021.
According to NEDA Secretary Mr. Ernesto Pernia:
“I am very happy about this program. ADB has been very cooperative and helpful in our objectives to sustain our economic growth and achieve inclusive development. This will help bring us closer to our longer-term vision of a prosperous, middle-income country where no one is poor by 2040.”
The proposed lending program is going to support the “Build, Build, Build” (BBB) program with two-thirds of the ADB pipeline, or about $4.5 billion going to be allocated for projects that connect regions and communities and manage urbanization, such as railways, bridges, roads, and flood management.
One third of the pipeline will focus on policy support and social assistance in the areas of inclusive finance, capital market development, local government development, and youth employment and the agreement rolls on a three- year program and is revisited annually.
DOF Assistant Secretary Ms. Maria Edita Tan mentioned the following about the lending:
“ADB has been a very responsive partner. When we asked them to consider co financing some of the large infrastructure projects under the BBB program, ADB immediately stepped up to the challenge.”
ADB aims to lower the poverty to 14% by 2022 from the current 21.6% along with accelerating infrastructure and long- term investment, promoting local economic development and investing in people in Philippines.
ADB Country Director for the Philippines Mr. Kelly Bird said:
“ADB is committed to working closely and collaboratively with the Government of the Philippines to ensure that we deliver on our pipeline of projects.”
Established in 1966 and based in Manila, ADB is set to reduce poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth and region integration. Owned by 67 members out of which 48 were from the region, ADB total assistance in 2016 equaled $31.7 billion including $14 billion in co financing.