Seven major conglomerates formally formed Tuesday a consortium that vows to transform the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) into a regional airport hub.
The NAIA Consortium was formed following the submission of its unsolicited proposal to the Department of Transportation (DOTr) to transform the NAIA into a regional airport hub and to ensure that the NAIA would have the capacity to meet the continued growth in passenger traffic from the strong economies of the Philippines and the region.
Aboitiz InfraCapital, Inc., AC Infrastructure Holdings Corporation, Alliance Global Group Inc., AEDC, Filinvest Development Corporation, JG Summit Holdings, Inc. and Metro Pacific Investments Corporation, the seven partners that have a combined capitalization of over PHP2.2 trillion, also signed a memorandum of agreement formalizing the consortium.
With one of the world’s premier airport operators, Changi Airports International Pte. Ltd., engaged to provide technical support in the areas of master planning, operations optimization and commercial development, the group is committed to the development of a modern airport complex that will meet the long-term passenger demand at NAIA.
The project is estimated to cost up to PHP350 billion.
The consortium’s proposal supports the government’s ‘Build, Build, Build’ program with its plan to develop NAIA into a world-class facility and a regional air transport hub by upgrading its airside, landside, and air navigation support. This builds on the gains already achieved by the DOTR in terms of improving the traffic of aircraft movements on its runways.
The project is divided into two phases – Phase 1 includes improvements and expansion of terminals in the current NAIA land area, while Phase 2 involves the development of an additional runway, taxiways, passenger terminals and associated support infrastructure.
“Through this proposal, we envision a new NAIA: a fully-integrated premier gateway that we Filipinos can truly be proud of, backed by the know-how of an experienced technical partner and the strong synergy of seven homegrown teams. The message is clear: we need this, and we can get this done,” said consortium spokesperson Jose Emmanuel Reverente.
He added that the proposal includes a people mover that would link all three terminals and connect NAIA to the existing mass transport system in Metro Manila, as well as an option for a third runway.
“The proposal involves expanding and interconnecting the existing terminals of NAIA, upgrading airside facilities, and developing commercial facilities to increase airline and airport efficiencies, enhance passenger comfort and experience, and improve public perception of NAIA as the country’s premier international gateway,” Reverente said.
Passenger traffic to NAIA is expected to continue to grow significantly over the coming years and the existing runway configuration may be unable to accommodate the future flows. Construction of the additional runway will ensure the ability of NAIA to serve as Manila’s gateway for years to come, bringing potential capacity up to 100 million passengers per year.
The upgrades will elevate NAIA to the level of major regional airports such as Changi in Singapore and Suvarnabhumi in Bangkok, and will become a viable transit hub for the ASEAN region.
“Given the full support and commitment of each of the seven consortium members and the existing infrastructure already in place, the project implementation can be expedited. Immediate enhancements and capacity upgrades can be expected within a couple of years, followed by further expansion to be completed shortly after,” Reverente added.