The Philippine National Railways (PNR) will be rolling out two new train sets by next week, according to PNR General Manager Junn Magno. These were purchased for around P3 B through allocations given the PNR by the General Appropriations Act – the first time in 40 years that the country was able to acquire trainsets through the annual budget.
The three-cab trains are scheduled to begin carrying passengers from Malabon to the FTI railway station in Taguig by December 16. Each trainset has a minimum capacity of 752 passengers.
After this delivery, because its commissioned already, hindi na namin kailangang i-commission dito. we’ll put it in service by December 16,” Magno said during the unveiling of the trains at Manila’s Port Area.
The train unveiling ceremony was attended by various personalities, including Transportation Arthur Tugade, Indonesian Ambassador Dr. Sinyo Harry Sarundajang, PT Inka officials, and House transportation committee chair and Samar 1st District Rep. Edgar Mary Sarmiento.
“We will open it on that day after we christen it may biyahe lang from Dela Rosa to Tutuban,” Magno added.
The three-cab trains were delivered by an Indonesian government-owned firm, PT Inka. With their additional capacity, the PNR will have an increased current daily passenger service rate of 65,000.
The PNR Chief also announced that an additional four trainsets, each with four cars, are scheduled to arrive by January. These are part of the PNR’s total order of 37 sets from PT Inka.
“Ito 750 to 800 passengers per trip, and ito mas reliable ito dahil ‘yong mga trains namin ngayon can only make six trips well dahil sa maintenance issues. We’re slating this for between eight to 10 trips per day so that’s around 8,000 per day, per train,” Magno said of the coming trains.
The PNR spans over 1,000 kilometers and holds the distinction of being the country’s oldest railway system. Unfortunately, mismanagement of the system has forced the line to stop operations in the provinces. Currently, only 36 stations on the line are functioning. However, President Duterte and his administration have expressed their plans to revitalize provincial services, in line with the national infrastructure and developmental push.