Olongapo SubicBay BatangGapo Newscenter

Monday, July 06, 2009

San Miguel willing to buy majority stake in Subic-Clark expressway ‘if available’

AFTER DIPPING its hands into power, oil, telecommunication, and banks, food and beverage giant San Miguel Corp. is eager to add infrastructure in its diversified portfolio.

"Yes, if available," San Miguel President Ramon S. Ang said when asked if his firm was interested to acquire a majority stake in the government-owned tollway from Subic to Tarlac.

On Wednesday, San Miguel joined Metro Pacific Tollways Corp. in expressing interest to acquire a stake in the Subic-Clark Tarlac Expressway from the Bases Conversion Development Authority (BCDA).

The BCDA however has denied receiving any proposal, adding that it has yet to finish the terms of reference that will allow the agency to give the winning bidder a long-term contract to operate and maintain the expressway. The four-lane divided highway is expected to spur development in Central Luzon by connecting the Subic Freeport and Special Economic Zone, the Clark Freeport and Special Economic Zone, and the Central Techno Park in Tarlac.

The Subic to Clark portion spans 50.5 kilometers. Metro Pacific, which holds other infrastructure investments, operates the expressway on an interim basis.

San Miguel has been in acquisition mode following its announcement two years ago of a plan to venture outside its core businesses. It has acquired stakes in Manila Electric Co., Petron Corp., and Liberty Telecom Holdings, Inc. among others. — K. J. R. Liu - BusinessWorld

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