CITY OF CALAMBA, Laguna: President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. led the contract signing ceremony for the Philippine National Railways Southern Commuter Railway Project on Thursday morning, October 6 at the Jose Rizal Monument, The Plaza, Calamba City, Laguna.
The President or BBM was greeted by Calamba City Mayor Roseller Rizal and other local officials, who were joined by Kim Inchul, South Korean Ambassador to the Philippines; Ceren Nur Coskun, Acting Chargé d’Affaires of the Turkish Embassy in the Philippines; Ahmed Saeed, Vice President of the Asian Development Bank (AfDB) for East Asia, Southeast Asia and the Pacific; and Transportation Secretary Jaime Bautista.
It was announced in June 2022 that the AfDB will fund the project for a total of $4.3 billion or 227.6 billion pesos in loan financing.
The rail system will have 18 stations passing through 10 cities, namely Manila, Makati, Taguig, Parañaque, Muntinlupa, San Pedro, Biñan, Santa Rosa, Cabuyao and Calamba.
A connecting tunnel will also allow the operation of direct trains from Calamba to future Metro Manila stations, further reducing travel time between Manila and Calamba from 2.5 hours to one hour.
The signing of the contract was considered to signify the winning bid for the four different stages of the project, which will be overseen by joint venture agreements between companies from South Korea and Turkey.
The Southern Commuter Railway project is also expected to further bolster the Philippines’ economic recovery from the devastating impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, as it is expected to create over 35,500 jobs during construction and over 3,200 permanent jobs. during operation.