DPWH, Korea Export-Import Bank sign partnership to build 32-km PNG Bridge
Back in 2019, the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) announced plans to construct an inter-island bridge connecting the neighboring provinces of Panay, Guimaras, and Negros.
The Panay-Guimaras-Negros (PGN) Bridge is expected to be longer than the San Juanico Bridge, which connects Samar and Leyte.
In the present day, work on the aforementioned bridge has yet to begin. This is because the DPWH is still conducting feasibility assessments for the project.
However, the South Korean government has previously stated that it is willing to provide financial assistance in the conduct of engineering services for the inter-island bridge project.
To formalize the partnership, the DPWH and the Korea Export-Import (KEXIM) Bank’s Manila Representative Office recently signed a financial support agreement for engineering services such as preliminary and detailed engineering design, as well as procurement assistance, required prior to the bridge’s construction.
Emil K. Sadain, DPWH Undersecretary for Unified Management Office Operations (UPMO), and Jae-jeong Moon, Country Director of KEXIM, were in attendance at the ceremony.
According to DPWH Acting Secretary Roger G. Mercado, the PGN Bridge Project’s detailed engineering design (DED) will commence after the Koreans complete their supplemental feasibility studies.
The proposed island bridges will be made up of two parts. The first is the 13-kilometer Panay-Guimaras leg, or Section A, which will include a 4.97-kilometer sea-crossing bridge. Meanwhile, the Guimaras-Negros section, or Section B, has a total length of 19.47 km, including a sea-crossing bridge length of 13.11 km.
“The 32-kilometer bridge is a large and complex project which requires comprehensive and high-standard engineering works that service by consultants who have extensive experience in the long-span bridge will help DPWH prepare the construction in an efficient and timely manner,”said Sadain.
Work on the bridge could begin in 2024, which is still a few years away. However, once the soon-to-be-completed longest bridge in Region 6 is completed, it will be the quickest method by land for people to cross Iloilo, Guimaras, and Bacolod for trade, tourism, and other necessary travels.