Why NAIA Shouldn’t Be Closed Down

NAIA Terminal 1 under renovation.
NAIA Terminal 1 under renovation.

MANILA, Philippines – A Department of Transportation and Communications study consultant said the government should improve the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA), and make Sangley the second airport of Metro Manila and surrounding areas.

This contradicts a study by the Japan International Cooperation Agency, which is premised on closing NAIA. Ben Lao, who has helped plan airports around the world, said many big cities have two or more airports and NAIA should be one of the Manila area’s airports.

In an interview on ANC’s Inside Business, Lao said it would be a waste to convert an already operating airport to another property development. “You have to look at airports in the context of a metropolitan area. Great cities in the world with more than 10 million population have more the one airport because of the demand… What we need is NAIA in conjunction with a new airport… to accomodate the demand for the next 50 years or more,” he said.

“We should keep the airport there because it’s already operating, managing and accommodating 33 million passengers a year, with its limited assets, real estate and it has done quite well considering,” he added. The DOTC said it has not decided if and when the government will close NAIA. “The decision to close down NAIA will be based on traffic growth and market forces,” the DOTC said. Lao said NAIA just needs an additional runway, like the one proposed by San Miguel and PAL president Ramon Ang, the technology to increase take offs and landings, and improvements in the terminals.

He said the new runway will need political will because it involves expropriating some land in Moonwalk and Multinational villages in Paranaque. But the DOTC said it’s not that simple since there are safety and airspace issues to consider. “The development of a new runway at NAIA is currently being evaluated because there are issues in the proposal, such as the displacement of hundreds of families, safety issues, and an already restricted airspace,” the DOTC said. The department did not say whether it considered this before Ang publicized it and whether it’s already hired experts to study the issues.

“The procurement process for the NAIA Runways Optimization project was started on 14 November 2013. Most bidders, however, were unable to comply with the legal requirements under the procurement law which is why we had to hold subsequent biddings,” the DOTC said. The government agrees that new technology can increase takeoffs and landings. In fact, then DOTC Secretary Mar Roxas was discussing this before he left the department in 2012.

But the DOTC said it only started to try to hire experts on this in November last year. Terminal improvements include redesigning how people flow through them and adding trains that will make it easier for passengers to make their connecting flights. “I think the authorities should engage the airlines in this process and make them a partner because there’s a symbiotic relationship between the airlines and airport authorities to begin with. To see what can be done and what can be done to maximize the efficiency, flow, and comfort level of the passengers,” Lao said.

The architect said such improvements can help NAIA serve Metro Manila and surrounding provinces for the next 20 years. But Lao said it would help if the government already starts using and investing in Sangley as the area’s second airport. “While we maximize NAIA where we improve the comfort level, the efficiency and basically clear out the clutter at NAIA, we should concurrently plan a new airport that would take care of traffic demand in the future… That could be sangley because it has an established flight path, and runway operations,” he said. He said reclamation could easily bring Sangley to four runways in the decades ahead.

The JICA study, released by the DOTC over a week ago, said Sangley was the best site for a so-called new NAIA, over seven other sites in Luzon, Manila Bay or Laguna Lake. Sangley got the highest rating in 8 out of the 9 criteria. The closest competitor was a Laguna Lake reclamation proposal. Manila Bay, similar to one of Ang’s proposals, ranked third on the JICA study.

Source: Coco Alcuaz, ANC    

Panglao-Bohol Airport: 5 Groups Bid for the Airport Project

MANILA, Philippines – Five groups are vying for the P4.8-billion (US$109 milion) Bohol Airport construction and sustainable environment protection project, based on documents from the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC).

According to General Bid Bulletin No 13 – 2014, issued by DOTC undersecretary Jose Perpetuo Lotilla, the prospective bidders – who already submitted their technical proposals – are the following:

the tandem of Maeda and Toyo Corporation

the joint venture of Taisei Corporation and JATCO

Shimizu Corporation

the partnership of Sumitomo Corporation and Mitsui Construction Company Ltd.

the joint venture of Chiyoda and Mitsubishi Corporation

The DOTC said the project involves building a new airport in the municipality of Panglao in Bohol. This airport will replace the existing Tagbilaran airport. The DOTC said the project would have 6 components and would be funded through a concessional loan from the Japan International Cooperation Agency.

The first component covers the general requirements. These include insurance, employer’s and engineer’s facilities, environment management, and project and maintenance equipment. The second component involves building of access roads and airport infrastructure, including the runway strip, runway taxiways, and others.

The third component covers utility works, including the water supply, power supply, and sewage treatment. The fourth component covers the passenger terminal building, control tower, fire station, driver’s lounge, car parks, toilet, guard houses, and others.

The project’s fifth component is the air navigation facilities while the sixth component is the aeronautical ground lighting works.

The bidding for this project is limited to Japanese nationals in the case of the prime contractor, allowing for other nationalities in case of the sub-contractors. Should the prime contractor be a joint venture, the DOTC noted that the prime contractor should be Japanese and that they should contribute more than 50% of the total contract amount.

The DOTC added the bidding would be conducted through a single-stage two-envelope procedure with no prequalification, in accordance with the applicable guidelines for procurement under Japanese official development assistance loans.

To qualify, a bidder should submit its audited balance sheets or financial statements showing that its net worth calculated as the difference between total assets and liabilities should have been positive for the last 5 years.

Bidders should also have a minimum average annual construction turnover of 8 billion yen (US$78 million) and its joint venture partners should have been a subcontractor or management contractor for at least 10 years. – Rappler.com

Clark International Airport The Best Alternative To NAIA, Says Economist

Among the three alternative locations for a new gateway, Clark International Airport is the most feasible to replace the congested and outmoded Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA), which was built in 1981.
At this point, expanding Clark International Airport would be the most feasible given the existing facilities there, Alvin Ang, a professor at Ateneo de Manila University’ Economics Department, told GMA News Online on Tuesday.
“Kaunting development na lang ang kailangan,” he said.
The 33-year-old NAIA is now processing 30 million passengers a year or two million shy of its 32-million capacity.
In anticipation of a three-fold increase in passengers by 2040, the Department of Transportation and Communications in November 2013 identified two feasible options: to expand and upgrade Clark International or build a completely new gateway facility 20 to 30 minutes away from Metro Manila.
French airport operator Aeroports de Paris is doing a feasibility study on a master plan and design for a P7.2-billion budget terminal that will expand passenger capacity of Clark International to 15 million a year from its current 5 million.
“In other countries, international airports are located outside of the capital for less costs on getting right of way,” Ang said.
Determining which the best location for the new gateway entails a good analysis of cost and benefits of the alternative areas, the economist said.
“The cost is important at dapat mas maraming benefits, like accessibility, income for government, affordability and more people, goods and services will be moved,” Ang said.
The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) formally recommended Sangley Point in Cavite as the location of a new international airport to replace the congested NAIA in a presentation last June 13.
The good thing about Sangley Point is it was a former base, Ang said.
“May airport na doon, but you need roads or train to access it,” he said, noting this will require government to shell out money to buy the necessary right-of-way.
Sangley Point is a former US Navy base in southwestern Cavite province, 20 minutes away from Makati City.
Last month, Ramon Ang, president and COO of diversified conglomerate San Miguel Corp., made a separate proposal to President Benigno Aquino III for a $10-billion airport.
The proposed airport will be located in a 1,600-hectare property owned by Cyber Bay Corp., straddling the cities of Las Piñas and Parañaque along the Manila-Cavite Expressway (Cavitex).
However, the economist said San Miguel’s proposal is quite expensive as the project would need to reclaim more land and spend more for right-of-way to accommodate the road infrastructure.
“Marami na ang nakatira sa Las Piñas at Parañaque kaya mahirap din kumuha ng right-of-way,” Ang said.
“Pero kung hindi government ang gagastos, it’s okay,” he added.
The expansion of Clark International Airport will benefit a new sprouting metropolis, Clark Green City, of state-run Bases Conversion and Development Authority.
Clark Green City, which covers 40,000 hectares that encompasses the Clark Freeport and Special Economic Zone, will be developed as a destination for investors.
The master plan for Clark Green City was approved by the National Economic and Development Authority NEDA board on May 30.

DOTC Study Recommends Sangley Point As Location Of New International Airport


MANILA – A study commissioned by the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) has recommended building an alternative to the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) at a former U.S. airbase in Cavite province.

According to DOTC, the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) last Friday presented its recommendation for a new international airport at the Sangley Point.

“It will now begin working on a feasibility study, with the aim of inaugurating a new main airport by 2025,” DOTC said.

The department said JICA’s study has yet to be presented to President Benigno Aquino III. The government wants to build a new international gateway that is 25-30 minutes away from NAIA, which will reach its full capacity as early as 2018.

DOTC, whose head Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya is a politician from Cavite, had been looking at either Sangley Point or Clark, another former US airbase that has since been transformed into an economic zone. Most airlines fly out of NAIA, with less than 10 operating from Clark in Pampanga province.

Available data from DOTC show that NAIA aircraft movements – defined as takeoffs and landings – went up to 255,000 in 2011 from 171,000 in 2006.
 At the same time, the fleet of commercial airlines using NAIA doubled to 119 from only 62 in 2008. These aircraft serviced 30 million passengers last year, up from 18 million in 2006.

Earlier, San Miguel Corp (SMC) proposed to build a new international airport at a reclaimed area along the Manila-Cavite Coastal Road at a cost of $10 billion.

San Miguel’s proposed airport, which would be pursued as a build-operate-transfer (BOT) project, would be located on 1,600 hectares of newly-reclaimed land and would be separated from adjacent areas by a drainage channel.

The airport layout is based on an international and domestic passenger handling capacity of 75 million passengers per year, with scalability to cater to more than 100 million a year. A separate passenger terminal facilities are planned for full-service and low-cost airlines. The terminals will have up to 164 contact gates serviced by protected passenger boarding bridges and walkways.

Once built, the new airport can accommodate all international and domestic operations at the NAIA. International and domestic operations will be co-located allowing for more convenient international-domestic connect times.

The new airport would be only 11 minutes away from the Makati central business district via a new airport expressway rail service.
 The proposed airport expressway would be 15-kilometers long, providing quick access to Fort Bonifacio, Ortigas and Eastwood as well as an alternative route to Makati.

SMC has a 49 percent stake in Philippine Airlines Inc (PAL), which the food-and-beverage conglomerate acquired from tycoon Lucio Tan, who still holds the remaining 51 percent of the flag carrier.

Source: Darwin G. Amojelar, InterAksyon.com


Foreign Firms Eye NAIA Runway Consultancy Deal

MANILA, Philippines – Three foreign companies expressed interest in the P91.4-million consultancy contract to increase the runway capacity of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).

The Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) said the 3 firms included Mitre Corporation of the United States, NATS Ltd of the United Kingdom, and Copenhagen Airport of Germany.

DOTC Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya said the agency would still pursue the runway optimization project despite two failed biddings.

“The likes of Mitre, NATS, and Copenhagen Airport have expressed interest. NATS in particular did a consultancy in Hong Kong and Singapore and they have increased movements by 20%,” Abaya said.

According to representatives from the UK-based NATS Ltd., it is possible to increase the capacity of the existing NAIA runway to between 50 and 60 movements per hour from the current 40 movements per hour, the transportation chief said.

“We need that kind of expertise to tell us what so we improve our movements per hour,” Abaya added.

Improving the airside capacity of the country’s main international gateway involves increasing runway movements, improving slot schedules, adding infrastructure, and upgrading technology.

Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) deputy director general Capt John Andrews earlier said airlines lose at least P7 billion a year because of congestion in NAIA.

Passenger Volume

To better accommodate an increasing number of passengers, the DOTC is also planning to push through with the construction of a 2.1-kilometer parallel runway, to be constructed south of the existing primary runway 06/24.

The Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB) said that passenger volume in the Philippines increased in the first quarter of 2014 to 9.65 million, up from 9.55 million in the same period last year.

International passenger traffic reached 4.50 million while domestic air traffic increased by 1.5% to 5.13 million.

“Growth has been slow but positive and we hope to improve it this year. The CAB will continue to support Philippine tourism and business travels through strategic and key bilateral aviation partnerships,” CAB Executive Director Carmelo Arcilla said.

A study by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) showed that the number of passengers in Greater Capital Region would hit 106.7 million by 2040 – more than triple the 31.88 million recorded in 2012.

To address this, the DOTC is eyeing a new international airport by 2027 with the joint development of NAIA in Manila and the Clark International Airport in Pampanga.

Diversified conglomerate San Miguel Corporation also plans to put up an international airport in a 1,600-hectare property along the Manila-Cavite expressway coastal road. – Rappler.com

Manila’s New Airport


US10 Billion Airport for Manila
The Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) said it would be evaluating the proposal project of San Miguel Corporation (SMC) to build a $10 billion worth international airport with build the four-runway hub in Manila Bay.

“The DOTC will invite SMC to make a formal presentation to us so we can thresh out the details. We are open to the proposal so far but will need more information to study it properly,” Michael Arthur Sagcal, DOTC spokesperson.

“The JICA study identifying the site for a new airport will continue, since we haven’t received, much less approved, SMC’s proposal,” Sagcal said, as he’s referring to the Japan International Cooperation Agency.

According to a JICA study commissioned by the DOTC, the possible locations for the new airport should be the Sangley Point in Cavite and Laguna de Bay.

On Wednesday, SMC submitted to the government a proposal to build an international airport, under a build-operate-transfer scheme, that will be rise along the waterfront reclamation project, Manila-Cavite coastal road, covering the the municipalities of Paranaque and Las Pinas.

The planned airport would compete with the international gateways to the country of Hong Kong and Singapore. The proposed new international sky gateway at a reclamation project will be having four-runway hub that would be double the 400-hectare property occupied by the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).

With its single runway, NAIA was built in 1981 to service six million passengers per annum, however,  last year exceeded its maximum annual capacity of 30 million passengers.

Philippine Airlines and other carriers randomly suffer flight delays as Manila and other airports across the archipelago struggle to handle gushed air traffic.

SMC owns a 49-percent stake in flag carrier Philippine Airlines Inc (PAL), which the food-and-beverage conglomerate giant acquired from tycoon Lucio Tan, who still holds the remaining 51 percent of the jets airliner.

Source: The Centrio Times

San Miguel Corp. To Propose $10-Billion Manila Airport

Terminal 2 of Ninoy Aquino International Airport, home of Philippine Airlines

San Miguel Corp (SMC.PS), the Philippines’ most diversified conglomerate, is planning to present a proposal to the government soon for a new $10 billion airport in the capital, its president said on Tuesday.

Ramon Ang confirmed a Nikkei report that the company was set to present its plan for an alternative international airport in Manila next month. He confirmed the report in a text message to Reuters.

The group, which also owns a portion of flag carrier Philippine Airlines (PAL.PS), announced last year its intention to build a new facility to replace the ageing airport currently in used. It delayed the plan pending questions on state policy on airline companies operating airports.

(Reporting by Rosemarie Francisco; Editing by Paul Tait)

LAGUNA or CAVITE: New Site for International Airport

The old Sangley Point, the future site of Ninoy Aquino International Airport.

MANILA, Philippines – The government is considering Sangley Point, a former US Naval base in Cavite, and Laguna de Bay, as possible sites for a new international airport that will replace the old and congested Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).

The two locations were cited by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), which is conducting a “site selection study” for the new airport, according to Transportation Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya.

“Our initial feedback is that they are looking at Sangley because it is within the 20-minute parameter and is accessible. One could also be… Laguna de Bay,” Abaya stressed.

The government prepared an airport roadmap until 2040 that calls for the creation of a new international gateway that should be “within 20 to 30 minutes of Metro Manila” and operational by 2027. (READ: Another in’tl airport near Metro Manila)

Abaya noted in both Sangley Point and Laguna de Bay, massive reclamation will be done because the new airport requires at least 2,000 hectares.

He said “it is very difficult to look for a place that big” 20 minutes away from Metro Manila.

Abaya said the project could be undertaken through the Public-Private Partnership program. He said unsolicited proposals “won’t happen.”

JICA projected airline passengers from the capital and nearby provinces will hit over 106 million by 2040 and a new airport is needed to accommodate the volume.

Abaya said the government is considering closing NAIA by 2030, with the new airport serving 78% of the passenger volume and the Clark International Airport in Pampanga taking care of the rest.

He said another option is to allow NAIA to coexist with Clark and the new airport.

Before anything is firmed up however, the government is working on expanding the capacities of Clark and NAIA.

Some 6,000 square meters were added to the existing passenger terminal building in Clark, and a new 45,000-sqm low-cost carrier terminal will be built there.

In NAIA, terminals 1 and 3 are being rehabilitated. (READ: Gov’t on NAIA rehab: Be patient).


Source: Rappler.com

New Bohol Airport Has Final Masterplan

Source: The Bohol Standard


The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has submitted the final detailed design study report which serves as the masterplan of the ultimate execution of the P7.4 billion new Bohol airport.

Gov. Edgar Chatto on Thursday received the bulky document required to set in full swing the major stages of the ambitious project, including the bidding of the construction of the runway, terminal building and other facilities.

JICA officials turned over the final report to the governor while he led a Union of Local Authorities of the Philippines (ULAP) conference-workshop with DepEd, private sector and civil society groups on the state of education at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Pasig City.

The report also details the project’s power supply, water and sewage treatment systems, impact assessment on climate change mitigation, environmental and social considerations, and final review of the resettlement action plan (RAP) for the community directly affected.

Earlier, JICA Study Team chief Tadashi Aoi and resettlement specialist Yuki Todoroki submitted the final version of the updated RAP, which includes livelihood assistance and employment matching.

While in Manila, Chatto immediately talked to Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) Sec. Joseph Emilio Abaya, Usec. for Planning Rene Limcauco, Usec. for Project Implementation Julianito Bucayan, Jr. and Asec. for Project Implementation Ildefonso Patda, Jr.

Abaya reiterated the vision to finish the concrete rise of the new Bohol airport on Panglao island earlier than its target time for its inauguration before Pres. Benigno S. Aquino III leaves Malacañang in mid-2016.

First District Rep.Rene Relampagos expected the civil works/construction of the airport, including its terminal building and other facilities, to begin within the second quarter of 2014 after the tedious processes from tendering of bid documents to contract awarding.

With the detailed design and study in final polish, the bidding has been done for the consultancy that assists and oversees the project across its implementation stages.

Chatto said coming soon is the notice to proceed with the airport site perimeter fencing and land clearing is coming.

The bidding for the water supply system has been done, too.

The governor on Friday presented JICA’s final project details report to the Sangguniang Panlalawigan members led by their presiding officer, Vice Gov. Concepcion Lim.

He will present the same to the members of the Local Project Management Team (LPMT) of the New Bohol Airport Construction and Sustainable Environment Protection Project (NBACSEP), the project’s official name.

The report was finalized and submitted seven months after the Japanese, thru JICA, and Philippine governments engaged in an Overseas Development Assistance (ODA) loan pact funding the built of the modern Bohol airport of international standard.

The ODA loan scheme is called Special Terms for Economic Partnership (STEP) while the Philippine government has own counterpart fund for the project, which will be financed thru multi-year releases.


The modern Bohol air terminal complex is bound to be an emerging capital airport not just in central and southern Philippines but entire country.

The existing old, small Tagbilaran City airport has been described as already “obsolete”—even one of the world’s most dangerous, according to foreign aviation experts—and cannot meet the rapid increase in air traffic.

The air passenger demand here rose 39,000 in 2001 to 572,000 in 2010 and 755,000 in 2011 with an average growth rate of over 30%.

The traffic forecast for 2015 is placed at over 1.040 million domestic and international passengers.

The country’s air passengers increased from 34.2 million in 2007 to 58.8 million in 2012 with an average annual growth of 11.5%, almost one-third of Bohol’s average yearly increase trend.

Once finished and operational, the Bohol airport can accommodate international flights from neighboring countries such as China, Korea and Taiwan, which are Bohol’s leading tourism markets, during domestic off-peak hours like nighttime.

The Bohol airport is assumed to be implemented in two major phases as the facilities set in place in 2016 or earlier are expected for expansion by 2025 to 2030 to accommodate simultaneous domestic and larger international carriers.

It is not just foreseen to be new capital airport that redirects and hastens both global and domestic multi-aspect economic and human movements to Bohol.

Owing to the inherent natural resources in Bohol and global concerns on sustainable environmental protection with energy conservation, the new airport is desired to deserve the status of an “eco-airport.”

Its resort-type terminal building will add a granite tag to it as a tourist flight infrastructure.