MANILA, Philippines - The government is set to implement the second phase of the P11.2 billion Jalaur River irrigation project in Iloilo, the largest Korea Economic Development Cooperation Fund (EDCF)-supported project.
"The Jalaur River Multipurpose Project Phase II is one of the first batch of projects and biggest of the three irrigation projects approved by the NEDA board this year," said NEDA Deputy Director General Rolando Tungpalan.
"It is a groundbreaking venture in terms of scale and importance in facilitating the increase in food production and ensuring food security in the country," said Tungpalan who led the meeting and signing of the minutes of discussion (MOD) with officials of the Export-Import Bank of Korea (Korea EximBank).
Out of the project's total approved cost of P11.21 billion, a proposed P8.95 billion will be financed through an official development assistance (ODA) loan from the EDCF.
Implementing government agencies of the project are the Department of Agriculture (DA) and National Irrigation Administration (NIA).
The Jalaur River Multi-purpose Project Phase II involves the construction of a storage dam, a high dam and reservoir across the Jalaur River.
Other structures will be established in support of a hydro-electric power plant to be built in Sta. Barbara, Iloilo for a potential bulk water supply connection with the Metro Iloilo Water District.
The project is expected to provide water supply to 22, 340 hectares of croplands, increase yields of palay and other crops in the area, strengthen the region's Irrigators Associations (IAs) and enhance community organizing activities for IAs in 9,500-hectare new irrigable areas that will be created upon completion of the project.
"The project will set the benchmark for other government projects in terms of speed, efficiency and, eventually, the effectiveness by which the project will be executed," Tungpalan added. (EHL)