Cebu Pacific Air (5J, Manila) President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Lance Gokongwei, has outlined the airline’s longterm plans which will see all jet operations eventually being consolidated under Cebu Pacific while all turboprop operations will be placed under its Cebgo (DG, Manila) subsidiary.
Speaking at Cebu’s annual stockholders meeting in Manila this week, Gokongwei said that between now and 2022, the Filipino carrier would retire a total of twenty-one aircraft including six A319-100s (to be sold to Allegiant Air (G4, Las Vegas McCarran) this year), seven A320-200s whose leases will expire from 2016 to 2019, and eight ATR72-500s to be retired between 2017/18.
The CEO said Cebu’s recent order for sixteen ATR72-600s (with options for an additional ten of the type) would allow the carrier to establish new bases around the country thus alleviating pressure on its Manila hub.
“Our main opportunity is that only 29 or 30 of the 90 airports in the Philippines are jet capable. There are a lot of islands and communities that cannot be reached by jet,” Gokongwei said. “And second, there’s a limitation of slots in Manila. I think the big market is really connecting these communities or secondary cities directly with the turboprop aircraft which is a prudent aircraft.”
To cope with its growth plans, Gokongkwei said Cebu has increased its capital expenditure to USD280 million this year to fund the airline’s fleet acquisition.