MPIC set to sign ₱24-b loan for Calax toll road
A unit of Metro Pacific Investments Corp. is set to sign this month a loan agreement with up to five local banks worth P23.6 billion to fund the construction of the Cavite Laguna Expressway.
MPCala Holdings Inc., a unit of MPIC, held a groundbreaking ceremony Monday for the Laguna side of Calax, a 45.5-kilometer closed-system tolled expressway connecting Cavite Expressway and South Luzon Expressway.
“We started our kick-off lenders meeting last month. We should be closing the deal this month. It’s about P23.6 billion. It’s being handled by HSBC. There are four or five banks that will contribute,” MPCala president Luigi Bautista said after the groundbreaking ceremony.
MPCala tapped DMCI Consunji Inc. to construct the Laguna side of the project and Leighton Holdings of Australia to build the Cavite side.
“We expect to complete and operate Calax by third quarter or fourth quarter of 2020,” Bautista said.
Calax involves the financing, design, construction, operation and maintenance of the four-lane expressway.
The P35.4-billion expressway will start from Cavitex in Kawit, Cavite and end at the SLEx-Mamplasan Interchange in Biñan, Laguna.
Calax will have interchanges in eight locations in Kawit, Open Canal, Governor’s Drive, Aguinaldo Highway, Silang East, Sta. Rosa-Tagaytay Rd., Laguna Blvd. and Technopark.
Aside form the P35.4 billion construction cost, MPCala paid the government P27.3 billion in premium bid upfront.
Public Works Secretary Mark Villar said the whole project which have one main toll barrier was expected to reduce travel time from Cavitex to SLEX by 45 minutes from the current 1.5 hours.
“The road construction project from Tirona Highway to the end of Greenfield near Mamplasan Exit, Laguna will be closely monitored so that by 2020, our travel time from Cavitex to SLEx will be reduced to only 45 minutes,” he said.
“Calax will be one of the most advanced highways in the Philippines. It is expected to ease traffic congestion along Governor’s Drive, Aguinaldo Highway and Sta. Rosa Tagaytay Road,” Villar said.
Once completed, Calax operations and maintenance will start from 2020 up to 2050.