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Facade of the Bureau of the Treasury building in Intramuros, Manila. (TMM)

Treasury mulls timing of Marawi bond issuance

Dominguez III said the Bureau of the Treasury (BTr) is studying the “exact timing” of the issuance of the Marawi bonds in relation to the schedule of the delivery of the pledges raised by the government from the international community last week in Davao City.

Dominguez confirmed that the bonds will be issued in tranches and would depend on the BTr’s judgment on when to best place them on the market.

“We still have the budget in place and actually, we have until 2022 to complete the funding. So we will review the pledges that we got and see the exact timing of them so that we can time the Marawi bonds as well,” Dominguez said during a recent press briefing.

Dominguez said the government might receive the initial commitments from the pledging session for the damaged city of Marawi either before the end of 2018 or early next year.

The recovery, reconstruction and rehabilitation efforts for Marawi will be implemented over a period of several years, thus, Dominguez said the government does not need (the funds raised via the Marawi bond float) “all at once.”

During the pledging session held in Davao City last Nov. 28 to drum up funding support for the Bangon Marawi Comprehensive Rehabilitation and Recovery Program (BMCRRP), the Philippine government received a total of P35.1 billion (about $670 million) in pledges from the international community.

Of the P35. 1 billion in pledges, P32.7 billion will be in the form of concessional financing, while P2.4 billion will be in grants.

On behalf of the Philippine government and the Filipino people, Dominguez thanked the following international development partners and countries that have pledged to support the BMCRRP: Asian Development Bank (ADB), World Bank (WB), and International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD); and the governments of China, which was the first country to offer its assistance to Marawi; Japan, for the firm commitments to help the City rise from devastation; and Spain, which offered additional funding support during the session.

Dominguez thanked as well the United Nations (UN) and the governments of the United States, Australia, China, Germany, Japan, Korea and Spain for their support for Marawi’s reconstruction efforts in the form of technical assistance and preparatory support needed to ensure the implementation of the Bangon Marawi program and carry out community-based initiatives to help the residents of Marawi rebuild their lives. The ADB and the World Bank also provided support in this area.

He also acknowledged anew the UN and its specialized agencies, as well as the governments of Australia, Italy, Japan, Korea, United States of America, and private sector partners, which have supported relief operations and contributed humanitarian grant assistance totaling around P6.9 billion (approximately $132.4 million).

The government’s planned issuance of Marawi bonds amounting to P13.5 billion (about USD258 million), budgetary support, and the P35.1 billion ($670 million) in pledges from the international community will more than cover the P47.2-billion financing requirement for the BMCRRP, Dominguez said.

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