Press Release
January 1, 2012

Work on P11.2 billion Jalaur River Multi-Purpose Project II
starts this month, says Drilon

Actual work on the P11.2 billion Jalaur River Multi-Purpose Project-Stage II (JRMP II) in Iloilo will commence this month with the National Irrigation Administration (NIA) drafting its engineering design after President Noynoy Aquino ordered the release of an initial P450 million for the project, Senator Frank Drilon said today.

"We are happy to welcome year 2012 in Iloilo with the start of the much-awaited Jalaur River Multi-Purpose Project-Stage II, thanks to the prompt endorsement and support from President Aquino," Drilon, a native of Iloilo, said.

"This development will be reason enough for Ilongos to adopt a positive outlook towards 2012 in terms of economic development and employment opportunities," Drilon added. "We have all the reasons to be optimistic."

Drilon said the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) between Department of Agriculture and Export Import Bank of Korea (ExIm Bank) in Malacañang in November paved the way for the approval of the project by the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) Investment Cabinet Committee last Dec. 20.

The MOU was signed on the sidelines of the three-day visit of South Korean President Lee Myung-bak to the Philippines upon the invitation of President Benigno Aquino III last November. Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala signed the agreement for the Philippines alongside President Kim Yong-hwan of the Korea Export-Import Bank.

Drilon said the actual cost of the project was P11.212 billion, the bulk of which will be sourced from a P8.95 billion loan from the Export Import Bank of Korea while a sum of P2.2 billion will be provided as a counterpart fund by the Philippine government.

The P450 million released by President Aquino to finance the engineering design and other initial works of the project is part of the Philippine government counterpart fund, Drilon noted.

The JRMP II, Drilon explained, is a priority irrigation project of the Department of Agriculture designed to significantly contribute to sustaining the country's rice self-sufficiency level. The additional benefits of this project include electricity generation and potable water supply to the residents of Iloilo province, he added.

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