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More IFPs need to be accelerated – NEDA



More IFPs need to be accelerated - NEDA

ALMOST 50 infrastructure flagsship projects (IFPs) in the pipeline will be accelerated as the government streamlines the process of obtaining permits, licenses and other permissions, a National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) offcially said.

This comes after the government on Tuesday launched the implementing guidelines for Executive Order (EO) No. 59, which limits the number of permits or approvals required for IFPs and simplifies the approval process of government agencies.

“We have a number of projects in what we call pre-project implementation. These projects are not yet ready for approval, but they are seeking all approvals, detailed engineering designs, consultations, etc.,” NEDA Undersecretary Joseph J. Capuno told reporters on the sidelines of an event on Tuesday.

He said between 35 and 50 projects are targeted for pre-project implementation, covering the transport, irrigation and agriculture sectors.

Of the total count, 40 are projects under the Ministry of Transportation, six are under the Ministry of Public Works and Highways, one is under the National Irrigation Authority and one is a project under the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority.

Anti-Red Tape Authority (ARTA) Secretary Ernesto V. Perez said that under the EO guidelines, the number of agencies that would issue permits for IFPs has been reduced from the current 30 to about 18.

“Now that EO 59 governs all national government agencies and local government units involved in issuing licenses, approvals, permits, certificationsFications and authorizations for IFPs… we have managed to reduce these from 30 to about 12 or at most 18 licensing government agencies,” Mr. Perez said at the event.

NEDA and ARTA have yet to provide the full list of agencies that would be tasked with issuing permits for IFPs.

“By limiting the number of requirements, the LGUs (local government units) and agencies are now forced to comply,” Mr. Perez said, noting that offIces previously mandated TueFThere were strict requirements that delayed the licensing process.

According to the guidelines, licensing authorities must follow the 3-7-20 rule as set forth in Republic Act (RA) No. 11032 or the Ease of Doing Business Law. This means that simple transactions must be completed within three calendar days, complex transactions within seven days and highly technical transactions within twenty days.

If an agency does not act within the deadline, it means that an IFP application is considered approved, according to EO guidelines.

Mr. Capuno also clarifiesFstated that EO 59 only addresses the licensing process for IFPs. The 120-day approval limit for IFPs pending before the NEDA Investment Coordinating Committee and the NEDA Board is still governed by RA 11966 or the Public-Private Partnership Code.

The guidelines will also allow the use of electronic or digital signatures and limit the number of signatories required for documents, NEDA Secretary Arsenio M. Balisacan said in a speech by Mr. Capuno at Tuesday’s event.

The rules also allow for the simultaneous processing of applications through the submission of a declaration of undertaking. It also requires the automatic approval or renewal of documents if licensing authorities fail to act within the prescribed time.

IFP licensors and related agencies are also required to automate and automate their database and implement an online or electronic submission portal to ensure seamless data exchange and a faster licensing process.

All government offUnder the EO guidelines, ice cream companies and LGUs are also required to establish one-stop shops for IFPs.

Under EO 59, the only local permits or approvals required for flagship projects include the Environmental Compliance CertificateFicate or certificate of non-coverage from the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources; construction or use permit issued by a municipal authorityffcial; excavation permit from the local government unit (LGU), and approvals from the National Commission for Culture and the Arts, the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority, the Department of Public Works and Highways, and the Bases Conversion and Development Authority, if applicable.

The Marcos government has an identityFThere were 185 IFPs with a total value of P9.54 trillion.

Mr. Balisacan said three IFPs have been completed since the beginning of the Marcos administration.

The Samar PaciFic Coastal Road Project and the Integrated Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation Measures in Pampanga Bay Project were completed in 2023. The Cagayan de Oro River Flood Risk Improvement and Management Project was completed Fcompleted earlier this year.

“We look forward to completing more projects in 2024 and beyond as we accelerate the rollout of our IFPs,” he added.

The central government aims to spend 5.6% of gross domestic product on infrastructure projects by 2028. BMDcruz