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P1.9-B NAIA rehab to start soon

MANILA, Philippines - The Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) said work on the P1.9-billion rehabilitation of Terminal 3 at the 30-year old Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) is set to start soon.

Transportation Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya told The STAR that the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG) has already reviewed the revised work agreement that would be signed by Takenaka Corp. of Japan.

 Abaya said the revised contract for the complete rehabilitation of NAIA Terminal 3 would be signed soon as the Japanese contractor had already conveyed its willingness to sign the work agreement.

 Takenaka was the primary subcontractor of Philippine International Air Terminals, Co., Inc. (Piatco), the builder of NAIA-3. The contract between the Philippine government under then President Ramos and PIATCO was cancelled during the term of former President Arroyo after it was discovered that the contract was riddled with irregularities.

Further delays were caused by years of litigation between the Philippine government and Piatco and the latter’s German shareholder Fraport AG.

 Takenaka had joined in the dispute and is also seeking compensation.

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Signing of the revised contract with Takenaka was scheduled early this year with the completion of the construction and rehabilitation works by the end of the year.

 The DOTC chief said there was a need to await the clearance from the government lawyers as the project was involved in an arbitration cases filed by PIATCO and Fraport.

 PIATCO filed an arbitration case against the Philippine government before the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) in Singapore seeking $565 million worth of damages while Fraport filed a separate case before the International Court for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) in Washington.

 However, former DOTC secretary Manuel Roxas II managed to convince Takenaka to complete additional construction needed to make NAIA-3 fully operational and even signed a memorandum of understanding with Takenaka president Toichi Takenaka.

The additional works involving 23 systems covers putting up systems for baggage handling, flight information display, building management, local area network, fire alarms, and passenger loading bridges.

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