Japan to provide assistance for MRT-3 rehab and maintenance

Manila, Philippines – The country’s closest ally, Japan, has committed to extend financial assistance for the rehabilitation and maintenance of the Metro Rail Transit Line 3 (MRT-3).

MRT-3 has been causing stress to commuters due to its recurring problem and suffered at least 500 disruptions in 2017.

The Philippines and Japan have reached an agreement which involves obtaining official development assistance (ODA) through a loan under Japan International Cooperation Agency’s (JICA) Special Terms for Economic Partnership.

“These developments show that we are wasting no time and effort in rehabilitating and restoring the reliability and capacity of MRT-3. This year, we will make significant improvements to MRT-3 and that is our commitment to the Filipino commuters,” said the Department of Transportation (DOTr) OIC Undersecretary for Railways Timothy John Batan.

A feasibility study is set to be conducted by JICA from January to February to assess what needs to be fixed in the MRT -3 systems.

The loan agreement will be signed in March to April followed by the procurement of the rehabilitation and maintenance provider once the assessment is completed.

This Japan ODA for the MRT-3 Rehabilitation and Maintenance Project is part of DOTr’s plan to improve the MRT system’s operations.

DOTr terminated its contract with Busan Universal Rail Inc (former maintenance provider of MRT-3). Last November after its failure to perform its obligations and procure spare for the train’s maintenance.

DOTr also aims to promote accountability when it terminated BURI; ensure continued service delivery by establishing the Maintenance Transition Team (MTT) and purchasing needed spare parts; contracting a rehabilitation and maintenance service provider with an ODA partner, to provide long term maintenance and operator provider for MRT 3.

Source: PNA

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