Govt Eyeing $13B Manila Bay Airport


The Transportation Department is set to propose to President Benigno Aquino III the construction of a $13-billion international airport in central Manila Bay, one of the potential sites recommended by the Japan International Cooperation Agency.

“We have gotten the pre-feasibility. This is a site location study for the new international airport. We hope to push it up to Neda [National Economic and Development Authority] board,” Transportation Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya told reporters.

The Neda board is chaired by President Aquino.

Abaya said Jica recommended two locations out of five sites considered for the new international gateway in Manila. The two are the Sangley Point in Cavite and central Manila Bay.

“I think these are the viable locations,” Abaya said.

The government wants to build a new international airport that is 25 to 30 minutes away from Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Parañaque City, which is expected to reach its full capacity soon.

Jica said Naia would hit overcapacity this year, by which time the airport would handle 37.78 million passengers. By 2040, passenger traffic would reach 101.49 million.

Naia accommodated 31.88 million passengers in 2012, exceeding the 30 million yearly optimal capacity of the terminal. Its maximum handling capacity stands at 35 million passengers a year.

San Miguel Corp., which used to operate Philippine Airlines, earlier proposed to build a new international airport at a reclaimed area along the Manila-Cavity Coastal Road for $10 billion. San Miguel returned the control of PAL to tycoon Lucio Tan.

The proposed airport would have an international and domestic passenger handling capacity of 75 million passengers a year, with scalability to accommodate more than 100 million passengers.

It would be only 11 minutes away from the Makati central business district via a new airport expressway.

The Transportation Department said it was now focusing its efforts on airside operations, through its Naia Runway Optimization Project, which aimed to maximize the use of the runway and increase hourly air traffic movements from 40 up to 60.

The agency tapped world-renowned air traffic management expert Nats Services Limited, which started gathering data at the airport this week.

Nats will submit its recommendations on Naia’s current airspace, runway and terminal capacity, air traffic and surface operations, runway access points, and air traffic controllers’ training within the next six months.

The Manila International Airport Authority and the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines will jointly implement the recommended improvement measures for the ensuing six months.

Source: Darwin G. Amojelar, http://thestandard.com.ph

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Airport PPP Projects To Be Auctioned Off


MANILA, Philippines–The government is looking at auctioning off several provincial airport public private partnership (PPP) deals later this year while authorizing the hiring of consultants to study the possibility of bidding out the country’s busiest airport, Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila.

PPP Center executive director Cosette Canilao told reporters that the provincial airport  deals are for Laguindingan, Panglao (Bohol), Puerto Princesa, Iloilo, Davao and Bacolod.

Puerto Princesa Airport
Puerto Princesa Airport

These would be a combination of operations and maintenance contracts with expansion components, depending on the need.

“We are looking at one bidding process but several packages,” Canilao said while adding they have yet to finalize how the airport projects would be bundled.

This was moving ahead of a the potential plan to auction out the operations of Naia, an aging gateway that handled about 32 million passengers last year. Naia has been facing congestion issues given its inability to keep up with rising demand for air travel.

The Department of Transportation and Communications is already reviewing a proposal to build a 2.3-kilometer parallel runway to complement the existing 3.4-km primary runway. This will allow Naia to accommodate more takeoff and landing events and ease air traffic congestion, which costs airlines an estimated P7 billion annually on top of delays for passengers. Any privatization of Naia’s operations is expected to draw significant private sector interest, which is why the government is exploring this option.

“The Naia O&M (operation and maintenance) and development plan is a different transaction,” Canilao said.

“DOTC has already asked PDMF support to hire consultants for that,” Canilao said, referring to the Project Development and Monitoring Facility.

PDMF is a revolving pool of funds from the Philippine and Australian governments to enhance investments in PPPs.

Canilao said the government is looking at auctioning off PPP deals recently approved by the National Economic and Development Authority, chaired by President Aquino. Among the more than $1 billion infrastructure deals that would be ready for bidding in the second half of 2014 include the Bulacan Bulk Water Supply Project (P24.4 billion), New Centennial Water Supply Source Project (P18.7 billion) and the Light Rail Transit Line 2 operations and maintenance contract.

Source: Miguel R. Camus, PDI

Manila Bay or Sangley?


MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) is still weighing its options on the location of a new international airport that aims to replace the overcrowded and aging Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).

Transportation Secretary Jun Abaya on Monday said the agency will incorporate proposals made by San Miguel and Philippine Airlines president Ramon Ang and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) on the location of the new airport.

Ang proposed a $10 billion airport to be built on a reclamation area along Manila Bay owned by CyberBay.

Ang said he is open to tapping other big corporations like SM and Ayala Corp. as partners for the project.

JICA, on the other hand, is looking at Sangley Point, a former US naval base, in Cavite as a possible location for the new airport.

According to Abaya, feasibility studies will still be conducted once the proposals have been finalized, noting that Ang has yet to formally present complete details of the project, particularly in design.

“At the end of the day, kapag nakuha na din namin ang proposal ng San Miguel or kung ano mang entity, dapat may pag-aaral kung saan bang lokasyon ang maganda para sa atin…Once a decision is made, doon na kami aakyat sa NEDA [National Economic and Development Authority] board coming up with a recommendation,” he told dzMM.

Abaya said the DOTC is also set to submit the proposal for the P7.2 billion low-cost carrier terminal at the Clark International Airport.

He stressed that proposals to transfer all operations of NAIA to Clark has been thumbed down, but the Clark airport will be developed to decongest NAIA.

“Paakyat na kami sa NEDA para mag-submit ng roughly P7 billion terminal para sa Clark. Papalaguin natin ang Clark, pero hindi ang solusyon na lahat tayo sa Clark. Ide-develop ang Clark, pero patuloy na mananatili ang NAIA,” he said.

Source: Jon Carlos Rodriguez, abs-cbn.com