MANILA- Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III is eyeing the possible conversion of the Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP) into an infrastructure bank in aid of the Duterte administration's ambitious “Build, Build, Build” program.
The plan was mentioned by Dominguez to officials of Japanese investment bank Daiwa Securities Group, Inc including its president and chief executive officer Seiji Nakata. The Japanese bank collaborated with the DBP on investment banking advisory services.
“We are very happy about your good experience with the DBP. We want to improve the DBP. Our plan is to make it the Philippines’ infrastructure bank,” Dominguez told Daiwa officials on the sidelines of the 50th annual meeting of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) in Yokohama, Japan.
“The DBP, in my view, lost its way for a few years so we want to redirect it like the Development Bank of Japan (DBJ Inc.),” he added.
DBJ Inc. pioneered project financing in Japan, specifically in the sectors of energy and infrastructure.
At present, the DBP supports the government's infrastructure program by assisting Public Private Partnership (PPP) projects at the national and local government levels.
As an infra bank, Dominguez said the DBP can aid its clients raise funds for projects by tapping the capital markets.
Nakata welcomed Dominguez’s proposal, saying that “we are more than happy to help you through the DBP.”
The Duterte administration plans to spend P8 trillion on big-ticket items such as railways and ports, ushering in a so-called "golden age of infrastructure" in the next six years.