By Yas D. Ocampo
Chinese foreign officials presented a proposal that would create a P218 billion Mindanao Railway Project, one of the key projects that President Rodrigo Duterte has been asking for decades from national officials to create in Mindanao.
The proposal was presented by the delegation of Chinese Vice Minister Wang Yang during the visit of the 40-man delegation sent to Davao City last Saturday.
The proposal aims to connect a loop line through various key cities — including Davao City, Cagayan de Oro, Iligan City, General Santos, Butuan, and Zamboanga City — to spur economic growth in the area.
Ma. Lourdes Lim, regional director for the National Economic Development Authority here, said the project was still in the feasibility stage. However, both Chinese and Philippine governments were keen on fast tracking the said project.
Lim said that the Chinese government intends to pour in billions of dollars in either private public partnership projects or official development aid, following the visit of Duterte to China last year.
The railway system in Mindanao is one of the priority projects of the Duterte administration’s Department of Transportation.