Asian Development Bank accepts $4.3 billion loan for Philippines Southern Commuter Rail Project

Image courtesy of the Philippines Department of Transportation

The Asian Development Bank (AfDB) has approved a loan worth up to $4.3 billion for the construction of the 55 km Southern Commuter Railway project between Metro Manila and the city of Calamba . Work on the project will include 18 stations and a connecting tunnel to create an interchange with the future Metro Manila.

The line will be designed to withstand typhoons and earthquakes, and will be elevated to prevent flooding.

When completed, it will be part of the North-South Commuter Railway (NSCR) and will be AfDB’s largest infrastructure project in the Asia-Pacific region.

The South Commuter project will be funded in sections, with the first tranche of $1.75 billion to be made available this year. The release of the second and third tranches is scheduled for 2024 and 2026.

The AfDB will finance viaducts, stations, bridges, tunnels and depot buildings, and the Japan International Cooperation Agency will finance rolling stock and signaling systems.

The project follows AfDB financing of the Malolos-Clark railway line, currently underway north of the capital.

Ahmed Saeed, AfDB Vice President for the region, said“The South Commuter Railway project will provide affordable, safe, reliable and fast public transport for commuters.

“This project represents the AfDB’s largest infrastructure investment and reflects our commitment to helping the Philippines achieve its goals of reducing poverty, improving the lives of Filipinos and achieving green economic growth, resilient and elevated.

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