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CDC vows transparent bidding for Mimosa

By Ding Cervantes (The Philippine Star) Updated July 09, 2011 12:00 AM

CLARK FREEPORT, Pampanga ,Philippines  — The Clark Development Corp. (CDC) said it will hold a “transparent” public bidding to transfer back to the private sector the 215-hectare Mimosa leisure estate here.

CDC president and chief executive officer Felipe Remollo said the bidding will be held as soon as a new set of terms of reference (TOR) for the bidding is finished sometime this month. Bidding, he said, could be slated this August.

Mimosa is being run by the CDC, the state-owned firm that manages this freeport, since former president Estrada ordered the former to take over in 1998 following the non-payment of dues to the CDC by its former owner Mondragon Leisure & Resorts Corp. (MLRC).

“There have been five failed biddings before and we do not want another one, so we have to be careful, calculated, and transparent,” Remollo said in a press briefing here.

The Mimosa estate has a casino, villas, restaurants, a hotel, and a 36-hole all-weather golf course designed by the Honolulu-based team of Nelson, Wright and Haworth.

In 2006, a Korean firm won in the bidding for Mimosa with an offer of P1.6 billion, but the bid was withdrawn after it failed to comply with “upfront payments”.

Again in 2008, the CDC also declared failure of bidding after the supposed winner, the Gatchalian-owned hotel operator Waterfront Philippines Inc., defaulted on its financial obligations.

The CDC shot down Waterfront’s request to extend the deadline for compliance with payment dues that included an upfront payment of P450 million for the going concern value (GCV), advance minimum guaranteed lease of P160 million, and another P160 million for the security deposit, the performance security equivalent to five percent of P50 million of the total investment commitment and the balance of P52.5 million for GCV.

Waterfront blamed payment delays on the demand of the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (Pagcor) for it to first pay the arrears of Mimosa’s previous operator MLRC, which the Gatchalian-led firm claimed would put the financial viability of the whole project in jeopardy.

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