Transportation policy potholes: analyzing Metro Manila’s COVID-19 response

Cielo Magno, Kevin Daniel Quizon, Dante Gatmaytan


Before the COVID-19 pandemic, the Philippine government was already implementing policies and building infrastructure aimed at improving the country’s road-based public transportation system and alleviating impacts of traffic congestion, especially in Metro Manila. However, with the pandemic, new priorities emerged. Public transportation now plays a vital role in controlling the spread of the disease while, at the same time, ensures that essential services are accessible, and public transport providers are sufficiently supported. This paper analyzes the road-based public transportation policies of the government during the pandemic using a multi-dimensional framework. In general, and in principle, we see that the government policies issued are consistent with the recommended transport policies that must be implemented during such crisis. However, there are some strategies that are untimely implemented, such as the mandatory utilization of the integrated terminals, the forced consolidation of transport providers, and the continuing modernization of jeepneys. 

JEL classification: L90, L91, R40, R42


Road-based public transportation, transportation pandemic response, PUV consolidation and modernization, integrated transport terminals

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