By Felix ‘Boy’ Espineda, Jr.
SORSOGON CITY (BicolToday.com/26-May-12) – True and gritty as a Bicolano, Senator Francis ‘Chiz’ Escudero of Sorsogon is pushing for the completion of the long decaying Bicol rail system to reach the province of Sorsogon arguing that the railroad is the cheapest mode of transport.
This agenda is now tops in his priority. Escudero is touted to land in the top spot for senators this mid-term election and will have a new six year mandate to end on 2019 enough time to push his agenda to rehabilitate the Bicol rail network.
The senator pointed out that the on-off railroad rehabilitation is costing the national government more losses in terms of economic production by the locals not serve by the rail lines for the cost of transporting goods and services are more expensive via land route.
Railroad towns jots the lines and agri-fishery produce could easily reach the metropolis and other urban centers less in cost.
The past years the Philippine National Railways received a token of budget, the provincial rail system that caters to consumers produced were left out in the appropriation thus resorting to financing loans from international institutions.
Neighboring countries who are densely populated relied heavily on their rail system to transport good, services and manpower, in return it achieved a competitive edge in domestic production.
Escudero said that national funds should be allocated to rehabilitate and construct new railroad lines in the Bicol Peninsula servicing the four inland provinces of the region. The stagnancy of the region to be competitive with other regions of the country will be addressed.
He however admitted that the government has not prioritize railroad system but will work with the other Bicolano senators to revive the project. Rehabilitating and constructing new lines will cost million of dollars for the government. [BicolToday.com]
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