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Modernize Bicol Express – Rep. Sarmiento

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Catanduanes Lone District Rep. Cesar V. Sarmiento called on his colleagues to establish an efficient system to addres the country’s mass transport needs as he announced the filing of a legislative measure which seeks to modernize the Philippine National Railways.

According to Sarmiento, House Bill No. 2037, otherwise known as An Act Creating the Philippine National Railways Prescribing its Powers, Functions, and Duties, will promote the modernization of PNR by increasing its authorized capital stock to PhP100 billion while simultaneously imposing penalties to individuals who impede the free movement of trains or who destroy the train tracks.

Should this measure merit his colleagues’ favorable action, Sarmiento said that the train line known as “Bicol Express” will be brought back to its glory having been “instrumental to the movements of goods and people across regions and provided growth to the Bicol region’s economy, tourism, competitiveness, and quality of life.”

He noted that because the quality of PNR’s service has deteriorated due to years of wear and tear, damage from neglect and devastation from natural calamities, it is in dire need of funds to provide for its modernization.

“The proposed legislation aims to modernize the PNR as the solution to the debilitating traffic congestion faced by Metro Manila and to the challenges faced by the slow movements of goods and passengers in Luzon and the Bicol region.”

“An efficient, organized, reliable and safe train system is the formidable answer to the transportation woes of the Philippines. Let this bill be the start of a ‘railway renaissance in the Philippines,” Sarmiento said.