Manila, Philippines – Operators of international airports in the United States, France, Switzerland, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea, and India will vie for the first airport project being auctioned off under the Aquino Administration’s public-private partnership (PPP) scheme.
Today’s opening of bids for the P17.5-billion Mactan-Cebu International Airport (MCIA) Development Project will serve as an “acid test” on the Philippine government’s PPP projects that the world will keep an eye on, according to the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC).
Operators of the Houston Airports System in the US, Aéroports de Lyon in France, Changi Airport Saudi Ltd. in Singapore, Incheon International Airport in South Korea, Malaysia Airports Berhad in Malaysia, Zurich Airport in Switzerland, and Indira Gandhi International Airport in India have teamed up with local and foreign entities in a bid to bag the transportation infrastructure project.
The international airports operators have joined the seven pre-qualified bidders, which include Metro Pacific Investments Corp. (MPIC)-JG Summit Holdings Inc. Airport Consortium; AAA Airport Partners; Filivest Land Inc.-Changi Airports International (CAI) Consortium; San Miguel Corp. (SMC) and Incheon Airport Consortium; First Philippine Airports Consortium; Premier Airport Group; and GMR Infrastructure Limited-Megawide Consortium.
“We know that the world is watching. This is the acid test for our PPP program. The higher the turnout, the more credibility it will mean for our projects,” said DOTC spokesperson Michael Arthur Sagcal.
The National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) Board earlier approved several changes in the original concession agreement to entice more competitive bids from the bidders. The changes include the lengthening of the concession period from 20 to 25 years, the transfer of operation and maintenance of aprons from the grantors to the concessionaire, including the right to derive income from their operations, and the flexibility of the implementation of capacity augmentation.
The government has also agreed to share in the concessionaire’s liability in paying the facility’s real property tax and to increase the period for prohibiting competing airports from 10 years or when the passenger traffic at MCIA reaches 15 million passengers per annum, whichever is later, to 25 years.
The P17.5-billion project involves the construction of a new world-class international passenger terminal building in MCIA, with a capacity of about 8 million passengers per year; renovation and expansion of the existing terminal; installation of all the required equipment; and the operation of both new and existing facilities.
When the new international terminal building is completed, the existing terminal, which currently caters to both domestic and international passengers, will be converted into an exclusively-domestic passenger terminal for the concession period.
Source: Kris Bayos, The Manila Bulletin