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Monday, July 15, 2024

US finalizing plans on infra project for Luzon corridor

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The US is concretizing its plans for the Luzon Economic Corridor—an infrastructure initiative connecting Subic Bay, Clark, Manila, and Batangas.

US President Joe Biden made the announcement during the 2024 G7 Summit in Fasano, Italy.

The US State Department and USAID pledged more than $14.75 million, subject to congressional approval, to support project preparation and technical assistance for infrastructure development and other strategic programs along the Luzon Economic Corridor.

It is a part of the US commitment to accelerate sustainable infrastructure investment through the Partnership for Global Infrastructure and Investment (PGI), the G7’s flagship infrastructure program. Biden and G7 leaders reaffirmed their commitment to the PGI at the summit.

The Luzon Economic Corridor is said to be the first PGI economic corridor in the Indo-Pacific.

Earlier at the April 2024 Trilateral Leaders’ Summit in Washington, D.C., the US and Japan joined the Philippines in supporting the infrastructure project.

A coalition of investors, co-chaired by GIP and KKR, and the Indo-Pacific Partnership for Prosperity recently signed a memorandum of understanding to collaborate on catalyzing infrastructure investment.

The coalition, which also includes Allied Climate Partners, BlackRock, GIC, The Rockefeller Foundation, and Temasek, will help identify, promote, and develop successful infrastructure projects. They will also support coordination with governments, multilateral development banks, and development finance institutions to create solutions for reducing investment risk.

The US government expects to replicate this model in other regions and countries in the coming years to further attract private sector investment, aligning with PGI priorities.

USAID is also providing transaction advisory assistance to the Clark International Airport Corp. (CIAC) for developing a food terminal and transport hub.

A US Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) grant is funding a feasibility study to support the expansion of a Vessel Traffic Management System at eight to 10 locations in the Philippines.

Another USTDA grant is funding a feasibility study and pilot for Energy Development Corp., a private Philippine energy developer, to evaluate GreenFire Energy’s technology for increasing geothermal power production.

A USTDA grant is partially funding a feasibility study and pilot project for Now Telecom Company Inc., a Philippine telecom operator, to support the development of a 5G mobile and fixed wireless network in the Philippines.

Meanwhile, Microsoft Corp. and its partners committed to investing nearly $5 billion in digital infrastructure, cybersecurity, skilling and other capacity building in Kenya, Indonesia and Malaysia and plan further infrastructure investments and initiatives in Thailand and the Philippines to support the G7’s PGI.

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