Aussie pledges P1.8 billion assistance

The Australian government has pledged P1.8 billion over the next five years for the rehabilitation of roads in Mindanao particularly in Misamis Oriental.

Australia made the pledge following the completion of the rehabilitated provincial road in Misamis Oriental funded under the provincial road management facility.

By progressing reforms in key governance areas of planning and budgeting, internal audit, human resource development and increasing locally-generated revenues, provincial governments compete for a share of up to P2.2 billion through the facility’s incentive mechanism. 

The five-year, P4.3 billion provincial road management facility helps provincial governments upgrade and  maintain their core road network in Mindanao and the Visayas. Misamis Oriental is one of the initial seven provinces covered by the facility.

“This road will make a significant difference in the lives of the citizens of Misamis Oriental. Communities are already reaping benefits from the improved road,” said Australian Ambassador to the Philippines Rod Smith.

The road construction has generated 100 local jobs. Travel time along the road has shortened from an average of one hour to 35 minutes, and average costs for transporting farm produce have been slashed by almost half. More than 1700 farmers are expected to benefit from the improved road section alone.

The facility is different to most other donor-funded road projects by focusing not only on road construction, but also ensuring that local governments put in place the governance systems to enable them to maintain the roads over time.