Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade, however, clarified while the government would not entertain offers from the private sector, it would handle the airport’s improvements.
“No unsolicited proposal, correct. No improvements in NAIA, wrong. Because even without the unsolicited proposal. we are continuously doing improvements,” Tugade said during the Asia CEO virtual forum.
“In fact, when we decided [that there would be] no more unsolicited proposals, we upgraded and rehabilitated runway 13/31 [of NAIA] … We will…address the requirements of NAIA terminal. We don’t address it not only in terms of passenger movements but more importantly in terms of convenience, in terms of security for the traveling public, for those inside the warehouse and the cargoes that go in and out of the airport,” he said.
The Manila International Airport Authority, which operates the airport, revoked in December 2020 the original proponent status of Megawide Construction Corp. and foreign partner GMR Infrastructure Limited for the P109-billion proposal to rehabilitate and transform NAIA.
Megawide offered to construct the project in three phases such as the improvement of airside and terminals and the connection via bus rapid transit. They also planned to build a new terminal, additional taxi lanes and an elevated railway.
NAIA Consortium, a previous proponent, informed the government that it would no longer pursue the NAIA rehabilitation project because it was not confident about financing the project.
NAIA Consortium members included Aboitiz InfraCapital Inc., AC Infrastructure Holdings Corp., Alliance Global Group Inc., Asia’s Emerging Dragon Corp., Filinvest Development Corp. and JG Summit Holdings Inc.
Aside from Megawide and NAIA Consortium, San Miguel Corp. also expressed interest to operate NAIA for 10 years while it was developing a bigger airport in Bulacan province.
San Miguel’s proposed 10-year concession was designed to give the government a freer hand on what to do with NAIA, once the Bulacan Airport was completed and operational.
“Our interest in NAIA does not intend to replicate what Megawide had in mind for NAIA. Our proposal is brought on only by the need to have it running effectively and safely for the Filipino people, until our Bulacan airport project is up,” SMC president and chief operating officer Ramon Ang earlier said.
“And until our airport is ready, that task needs to be done. We are also leaving it up to the government to decide on what to do with the NAIA in the future,” he said.
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