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A Brown, Malaysian partners mull East-West railroad project for PNR

Date: Sunday, 13 November 2016
Category: Publication – Manila Bulletin

Kuala Lumpur – A Brown Company, Inc. (BRN) of the Philippines, together with its consortium partners, has entered into a cooperation agreement with MTD Philippines, a subsidiary of infrastructure conglomerate AlloyMTD of Malaysia, for the development of the PNR East-West Rail Project.

At the signing, Dr. Walter W. Brown, Chairman Emeritus of A Brown, expressed his thanks to the Malaysian and Philippine governments. “We are grateful for the opportunity to be of service to the Filipino working class and commend the current administration for responding quickly to a need that has been postponed for too long,” he said. “We commit to complete the project before the end of the President’s term.”

Posing for a photo after signing of the cooperation agreement in Kuala Lumpur are (from left): Trade Attaché Glenn Peñaranda, EWRTC CSR Consultant Ma. Lourdes Arcenas, EWRTC Chairman Walter W. Brown, AlloyMTD Malaysia Chairman Tan Sri Azmil, Trade and Industry Secretary Ramon Lopez, Ambassador to Malaysia Jose Eduardo Malaya, MTD Philippines President Patrick Nicholas David, EWRTC President Roel Z. Castro, and EWRTC Directors Joel Bañares and Atty. Manuel Manaligod.

The project proposal was prepared by East-West Rail Transit Corporation (EWRTC), the consortium formed by A Brown and Private Equity Investment and Development (PEID) Corporation with Systra Philippines (member of the Systra Group of France) providing the technical assistance. It will be proposed to Philippine National Railways to alleviate the worsening traffic conditions in Metro Manila.

 “We see a lack of appreciation of the fact that due to the large volume of cars and the restricted number of roads, the bulk of our people are forced to travel two to three hours each way. So much time and effort is lost. The only way to solve it in the long-term is mass transport. We want to see the use of the most appropriate mode of transport to bring people without cars to their destinations within a reasonable time.”

Roel Castro, the newly appointed President of A Brown as of September, 2016, said that the project aims to provide a “hassle-free service” for the commuters. “For a number of reasons, we’re seeing a lot of problems in the existing trains right now,” he said. “Mass transportation is among the important infrastructure projects that are need-based, and we see a great opportunity there. This is all part of A Brown’s platform for contributing to the country’s development via infrastructure projects. There’s power, water, and transportation.”

A Brown is a key player in real estate and agribusiness in Southern Philippines with investments in energy, mining, and infrastructure. The company has established its expertise in project management through its subsidiaries in the power sector. Palm Concepcion Power Corporation (PCPC) is a 135MW coal-fired plant in Iloilo with a second unit in the pipeline. Peakpower Energy Inc. (PEI) has two bunker-fired peaking power plants: Peakpower Soccsargen, Inc.in General Santos and Peakpower San Francisco in Agusan del Sur with a third plant in Bukidnon currently in the preparation stages. These projects were established to supplement the shortfall in the electricity supply of the region. Hydro Link Projects Corporation is developing a hydropower plant in Surigao del Sur.Also underway is the bulk water supply project of A Brown in Opol, Misamis Oriental in partnership with the local government to finally address the town’s need for its independent water supply system.

On the other hand, MTD Philippines, through AlloyMTD Malaysia, is a leading Asian infrastructure conglomerate operating in the global market, actively present in Saudi Arabia, UAE, USA, UK, Australia, Indonesia, Singapore, Sri Lanka, India, Thailand, Chile, China, and the Philippines. The company has a vast experience in civil engineering and construction, manufacturing, infrastructure concessions, energy, port operations, real estate and property development, and operations and maintenance. Among its successful projects in the country is the rehabilitation and expansion of the South Luzon Expressway.

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