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The Philippine Reclamation Authority is moving forward with its reclamation projects for the year. According to PRA data, there are 19 reclamation projects lined up for the National Capital Region currently in various stages of application, permitting and implementation. Most of the projects are partnered between local government units, consortium and private firms such as SM Prime Holdings Inc.  

To date, only 1 reclamation project, the Navotas City Coastal Bay, is undergoing implementation. However, 6 reclaimed sites will soon follow as it has developed further into the detailed engineering status and is just a few paperwork away from full implementation. 

Cavite is home to the biggest reclamation projects such as the Sangley Point International Airport will be located in a 1900-hectare reclaimed land in the city. The second largest reclaimed site, with an area of 1,300 hectares, will also be situated in Bacoor by Century Peak Corporation.  

PRA gets autonomy under Duterte

The Philippine Reclamation Authority (PRA) regains control after President Rodrigo Duterte issued Executive Order 74 declaring that the final approval on reclamation projects rest on the Office of the President. This rescinded the previously issued Executive Order 146 of former President Benigno Aquino III that briefly transferred the approval powers to the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA)—a move welcomed by most business groups. 

The PRA believes that this order will help speed up the process as the officials see reclamation as the main solution to the “urban sprawl” in Metro Manila. At the moment, the Philippine Statistics Authority recorded 42,000 inhabitants per square kilometer in the metro, making it the most populated city in the world in terms of density. 

Reclamation slowdown in Manila Bay

Newly elected Manila Mayor Isko Moreno has made it very clear that the local government will focus on developing existing lands. The mayor will go off the path previously set by former Mayor Joseph Estrada when it comes to reclamation projects. 

Despite the promise of economic growth, Moreno noted that all proposals are as good as disapproved at the moment since it is not a priority. The Manila LGU will be focusing on lands located in Binondo and Pandacan instead.