METRO Pacific Investments Corp. Planning on Arbitration to End Dispute
Monday, October, 12, 2015
There is a chance METRO Pacific Investments Corporation (MPIC) will move forward with plans to arbitrate its dispute with the government over the inaction concerning the company’s delayed toll rate petitions. MPIC has accused the government of failing to honor contracts that affect the competitiveness infrastructure conglomerate’s participation.
Representatives from MPIC said recently the group has four years of inflation adjustments pending for the North Luzon Expressway and six for the Manila-Cavite Toll Expressway. MPIC owns Metro Pacific Tollways Corp., which operate both of the tollsways listed. To date, the company has had no luck getting the government regulator to do anything about the inflation adjustments applications. They are now issuing a formal demand that could land the dispute in arbitration in order to enforce their rights.
The government regulator, according to MPIC, claimed there was “no basis for action yet” because there has not been a completion of the toll rate review process.
MPIC is hoping for an amicable settlement, but if necessary, has every intention of taking the issue to arbitration. They have acknowledged an understanding of minor delays or delays that apply in only one situation, but with the situation as it is now, they believe the contracts are not being adhered to and are frustrated with waiting. Representatives point out, “These [delays] will significantly reduce the financial viability of future projects.” The company plans to bid on fewer projects and will bid less.
MPIC is one of the three Philippine units of First Pacific Company Ltd. Based in Hong Kong. So far the dispute has had little bearing on MPIC stock value.