Manila North Tollways Corp. said on Tuesday it borrowed P5 billion from Union Bank of the Philippines to finance its toll road expansion and refinance debts.
The operator of North Luzon Expressway on January 29 signed a 10-year fixed-rate term loan facility agreement with Union Bank.
“The proceeds of the loan will be used by MNTC to fund toll road expansion projects and the refinancing of MNTC’s loans,” it said.
MNTC in December signed an agreement with Philippine National Bank for a 10-year fixed-rate term loan facility amounting to P5 billion.
MNTC president and chief executive Rodrigo Franco had said the loan proceeds “will be used for various projects like our NLEx widening and SCTEx projects.”
The North Luzon Expressway widening project includes the expansion of the Sta. Rita-to-San Fernando segment to three lanes on both directions. The segment currently has two lanes. Further north, the Dau to Sta. Ines section will be expanded to two lanes each from the existing one.
MNTC is currently implementing the construction of Segment 10 at NLEx, part of the Harbor Link project leading to the Port Area, which is estimated to cost around P10.5 billion. Segment 10 is expected to open by the second quarter of 2017.
The company also allotted P1.5 billion over two years to upgrade the Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway.
State-run Bases Conversion and Development Authority formally turned over the management, operation and maintenance of SCTEx to MNTC last year.
MNTC earlier reported a net income of P2.22 billon in the January-September period, up 22 percent from P1.82 billion a year ago, mainly due to high traffic growth and toll revenues generated during the period.
MNTC’s revenues in the nine-month period grew 10 percent to P6.04 billion from P5.47 billion last year, as average daily traffic hit 199,196, up 9 percent in 2014.
Franco earlier said revenues could increase 15 percent this year if the TRB granted the toll hike petition.
The NLEx operator in September in 2014 filed a petition with TRB for the bi-annual toll adjustment that was supposed to fall due on Jan. 1, 2015, as provided in the concession agreement.
MNTC’s new petition is in addition to a pending request it filed in 2012 for a toll increase scheduled in January 2013.
The current petition will bring the cumulative toll adjustment to 15 percent, including 12 percent that is long overdue.