The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) will implement a temporary daytime truck ban during the 45th Asian Development Bank (ADB) meeting from May 2 to 5.
MMDA Chairman Francis Tolentino said the traffic scheme is aimed at decongesting Metro Manila’s major thoroughfares during the four-day international conference.
Based on initial agreements with various truckers associations, the temporary modified truck ban hours are 4 am to 9 pm, from May 2 to 5.
During this period, the implementation of the MMDA’s uniform truck ban, which is 6 to 9 am and 5 to 9 pm except Sundays, and holidays, will be suspended. The agency will resume the enforcement of the original truck ban starting May 6.
The daytime truck ban covers all large cargo and delivery trucks as provided by MMDA Resolution No. 07-05 Series of 2007.
Trucks that haul perishable goods such as fruits, vegetables, seafoods, and ice, are exempted from the temporary daytime truck ban provided they will not pass through the routes to be used by ADB delegates.
Tolentino promised to coordinate with the local governments of Pasig City, Quezon City, Taguig and Pateros to extend leniency and designate parking areas for trucks that would be effectively grounded during the modified truck ban hours.
The City of Manila, venue for most of the ADB activities, pledged to increase mobile patrol units to deter criminal elements who may attempt to sabotage the trucks during the 9pm to 4 am window hours.
The MMDA also promised to coordinate with the Philippine Ports Authority and the banking sector to allow the truckers to maximize operations and e-banking transactions for the days leading up to the May 2 to 5 period.
The 45th ADB Board of Governors Annual Meeting will be held at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC).
About 4,000 local and foreign delegates, finance ministers, central bank governors, representatives from international organizations and private sector are expected to participate in the event.
“The country stands to gain a lot in economic terms if the hosting of this event proves to be a success, that’s why we are doing our best to make the delegates’ stay in the country comfortable and fruitful,” Tolentino said.
Cargo truck operators have expressed support to the modified truck ban but asked MMDA to work out a way to secure their trucks and precious cargo against criminal elements such as hijackers.
The truckers’ association said their trucks will have to be parked somewhere while the daytime truck ban is in effect, making them vulnerable to hijackers and robbers.
Tolentino said he will coordinate it with the Philippine National Police (PNP). He also agreed to provide leniency to parked trucks as long as they do not obstruct traffic flow.
“We will extend to them all necessary assistance while the temporary modified truck ban is being implemented,” the MMDA chief said, adding that it is not the objective of the MMDA to disrupt the business operations of cargo and delivery trucks.
Tolentino thanked the leaders and representatives of the Supply Chain Management Association of the Philippines, the Philippine Ports Authority, the Integrated North harbor Truckers Association, the Asia Cargo Container Line, Inc., the Philippine Liners Shipping Association, the Port Users Confederation, the Philippine Automotive Federation, Inc., Air 21, and the Confederation of Truckers Association of the Philippines for their pledge of cooperation. “We could not do this without you,” he said.