San Miguel’s Ang not in favor of suspending SLEX toll collection


Posted at Oct 15 2019 07:22 PM | Updated as of Oct 15 2019 07:49 PM

San Miguel Corp. president and chief operating officer Ramon Ang said the government owes the SLEX P7.6 billion from unadjusted toll rates. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News/file

MANILA—San Miguel Corp. president and chief operating officer Ramon Ang has thumbed down proposals to suspend toll collection on the South Luzon Expressway. 

SMC's tollways unit operates the SLEX, as well as the Skyway, the extension project along which is causing traffic in the area.

A lawmaker has proposed suspending toll collection or lowering toll rates on the SLEX as thousands of motorists endured heavy traffic on the tollway.

But in an interview with DZMM Teleradyo Tuesday, Ang said the government already owes the SLEX P7.6 billion from unadjusted toll rates. 

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Ang said that while the North Luzon Expressway has been allowed to raise toll rates, the rates on the SLEX have not been adjusted since 2012. 

The SMC chief also said suspending toll collection will do nothing to improve traffic on the expressway. 

"Sige nga, suspendehin natin 'yung toll fee bukas, magbabago ba 'yung traffic?" Ang said. 

(If we suspend toll collection tomorrow, will it change the traffic situation?)

Ang, meanwhile, promised that the traffic along SLEX will "return to normal" by December 1, when they remove heavy equipment and road obstructions being used in the ongoing Skyway extension project. 

"Before holiday season, northbound and southbound, wala nang traffic 'yang lugar na yan (there will be no more traffic in that area)," Ang said. 

The Skyway extension project meanwhile will be completed by December 2020, SMC subsidiary Skyway O&M Corporation (SOMCO) earlier said. 

The extension aims to eliminate the need for motorists to pass by the Alabang viaduct, a perennial traffic chokepoint.