Senator Franklin Drilon said he is eyeing a partnership with the Federation of Filipino-Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry Inc. led by its president Alfonso Uy for the realization of the Jalaur River Multi-Purpose Project, Stage II.
The project is seen to be completed under the so-called public-private partnership (PPP).
Drilon, who was the keynote speaker in the Regional Development Council (RDC) 6 inaugural meeting at the Sarabia Manor Hotel and Convention Center in Iloilo City Friday, said that he is willing to work with the private sector for the development of Western Visayas, including the Jalaur River Project.
The P15.22-billion project, set to be completed in nine years, aims to address the irrigation needs of farmers in the province and solve the water problem of the city and province of Iloilo. It is also projected to produce 11.5 megawatts from hydro power.
Jalaur River is second largest river in Panay and 17th largest river system in the country, in terms of size in drainage basin. Its estimated drainage area is 1, 503 square kilometers and travels 123 kilometers from its source to its mouth in the Guimaras strait.
Drilon said there is a need to stimulate the region’s agriculture sector as Western Visayas is considered the rice granary of the country, with Iloilo province being the third biggest rice-producing province in the Philippines.
The Jalaur River Project was endorsed by the Iloilo Provincial Development Council to the Regional Development Council as a priority project October of last year.
Iloilo Gov. Arthur Defensor Sr. said he is hopeful the project would be realized soon with the help of Drilon, the RDC 6, and the National Economic and Development Authority.*with reports from PNA