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PH, Japan agree on P22.79-B loan to maintain Huey choppers, MRT system
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PH, Japan agree on P22.79-B loan to maintain Huey choppers, MRT system

November 8 ------ The Japanese government on Wednesday granted the Philippines a loan facility amounting to 48. 68 billion yen, or approximately P22.79 billion, for the enhancement of the country’s defense and transport capabilities. Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin, Jr. and Japanese Ambassador to the Philippines Koji Haneda signed the exchange of notes that will provide around P5 billion for the maintenance and rehabilitation of the UH-1H helicopters of the Philippine Air Force, and P17.79 billion for the rehabilitation of the entire MRT-3 system.

The grant on UH-1H choppers covers spare parts and maintenance equipment of the helicopters by the Japan Self-Defense Forces (JSDF). It consists of the following categories: airframe structure; dynamic power system, control system; rotor system; hydraulic system; electrical system; instrument system; accessory equipment; and others. The PAF uses its fleet of UH-1H helicopters on humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, transport, and intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance.

On the MRT-3 project, the loan would involve the complete rehabilitation of the rail system, restore its design capacity and reliability, the general overhaul of its entire fleet of 72 Light Rail Vehicles (LRVs), and day-to-day maintenance. The MRT-3 grant aid will also cover the railway line’s trains, power supply system, overhead catenary system, radio system, closed-circuit television system, public address system, signaling system, rail tracks, road rail vehicles, depot equipment, elevators and escalators, and other station-building equipment.

According to the agreement, the MRT-3 project will have a 43-month duration, with the rehabilitation to be completed in the first 26 months, and the general overhaul to be completed by the 43rd month. “This is why we have elevated our relationship with Japan to a strategic partnership. Today’s Exchange of Notes affirms this ever-growing, mutually beneficial and gratifying relationship between our two countries and our two peoples,” Locsin said during the signing of the notes. For his part, Ambassador Haneda stated that with the signing of these two projects, “let me assure you that we do not only mark our commitments on paper, we also pledge our all-out efforts in bringing these projects into successful completion.”