CONSORTIUM TO INVEST IN CEBU WATER PROJECT
Ayala Corporation and Central Equity Ventures, Inc. signed an agreement with the Municipality of Carmen as a first step in realizing an undertaking that will increase the water supply of Metro Cebu Water District (MCWD) by 35 percent.
Ayala Corporation executive managing director Fernando Zobel de Ayala, CEVI chairman Sabino R. Padilla Jr., and Carmen Mayor Amytis de Dios Batao today formalized their support for the Carmen Water Supply Project. The project involves the development, financing, design, construction, operation and maintenance of a water facility that will extract, treat, and deliver water from the Cantumog-Luyang River in Carmen to meet the needs of Metro Cebu households.
Cebu currently consumes 280,000 cubic meters of water per day, 50 percent of which is supplied by MCWD. The rest is provided by privately-owned deepwells. However, studies indicate that Cebu's aquifer is now overdrawn by two or three times its sustainable capacity. Meanwhile, businesses have noted the effect of a water supply shortage to Cebu's economic development.
The proposed project seeks to address this need by adding 50,000 cubic meters of water per day to MCWD's current capacity. An increase of 35 percent in the supply of MCWD will address 20 percent of the total water requirements of Metro Cebu.
CEVI, which has rights to abstract water from the Luyang River, invited Ayala as a partner in the Carmen Water Supply Project. CEVI is involved in special projects in water, power, mass transportation, and rural financial intermediaries.
Components of the proposed project include the construction of a rubber dam, a water treatment plant, booster pumping stations, reservoirs and a 27-km transmission line that will deliver potable water to MCWD's distribution network. The Department of Environment and Natural Resources has issued CEVI an Environmental Compliance Certificate for the Carmen Water Supply Project upon evaluation of its environmental impact assessment as required by P.D. 1586 (Environmental Impact Statement System).
Other government agencies including NEDA and the Local Water Utilities Administration are yet to evaluate, review, and approve the proposal. The project will then be opened for public bidding as required by the Build-Operate-Transfer Law for unsolicited proposals. The Ayala-CEVI consortium has the right to match the most attractive offer received by MCWD as the original proponent of the project. The winning bidder will be awarded a 25-year water concession in Cebu.