The city’s Public-Private Partnership for the People–Screening Committee (P4-SC) disclosed that companies with proven track record in the development of markets in the different parts of the country can still participate in the bidding for the proposed P6 billion public market development project through the required Swiss challenge.
City Administrator Bonifacio dela Peña, who chairs the P4-SC, said that the committee is still in the process of evaluating which of the two companies, SM Prime holdings Inc. and Robinsons Land Corporation, will be given the Original Proponent Status (OPS) based on established guidelines ranging from socio-economic, financial, legal and technical aspects of the project.
He added that based on the city’s P4 ordinance, the determination of the OPS is part of the 19-step process in determining which company will be given the go-signal to push through with the proposed development of the public market.
The city administrator claimed the whole process from the acceptance of the unsolicited proposals up to the award of the winning proponent will take at least 8 months or a maximum of one year including possible delays belying reports that the project was already awarded to one of the proponents.
After the determination and award of the OPS to the company compliant with the guidelines, he claimed that there will be a negotiation between the parties on the terms of reference based on the city’s financial projections and the proposal of the OPS where the agreed terms will be subsequently published.
According to him, the P4-SC will open the process to the required Swiss challenge where any company, including the one that was not given the OPS, will have the chance to make a better offer where the OPS will then be given the chance to match the provided offer.
Dela Peña explained that if the negations between the company that was given the OPS and the city will fail, it will be the end of the process.
On the other hand, he stated that if the company with the OPS will not be able to match the better offer submitted by interested developers, then the process will proceed where the city will have to deal with the firm that was able to provide the better offer for the market development and proceed with the remaining processes until the award of the same for eventual implementation.
The city official stipulated that even the consortium of market cooperatives can still participate in the Swiss challenge, provided that, the group can complete their required documents to participate in one of the critical steps of the tedious process that was provided in the city’s P4 ordinance.
He underscored the need for the city to push through with the long overdue development of the city public market as the city’s show window, aside from being left out in terms of development of the markets from other similarly situated urban centers and first-class towns in the different parts of Northern Luzon.
By Dexter A. See
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