Ayala Group still interested in NAIA rehab project
Louella Desiderio (The Philippine Star) - April 3, 2017 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The Ayala Group remains interested and is ready to bid for the P74.6-billion upgrade of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) even as the government has decided to put the project on hold.

“We are very interested in NAIA. We have a consortium ready for NAIA. It’s a very interesting consortium. We are actually excited if the government ever decides to push through with the NAIA rehab project because we think we can improve NAIA in 24 months,” AC Infrastructure Holdings Corp. president and CEO Jose Rene Almendras told reporters.

The project under the public-private partnership program involves the financing, design, rehabilitation, expansion, as well as operations and maintenance of all existing terminals of NAIA covering both landside and airside (except air traffic services).

The winning private bidder and the government will have a cooperation period of 15 to 20 years for the project.

Apart from Ayala Corp., other groups which have expressed interest to participate in the bidding of the project include San Miguel Corp. (SMC), Metro Pacific Investments Corp., Asia’s Emerging Dragon Corp., Aboitiz Equity Ventures Inc., and the joint venture of Megawide Construction Corp. and India’s GMR Infrastructure Ltd.

PPP Center executive director Ferdinand Pecson earlier said the government has decided to put the project on hold for now as it needs to have a complete or holistic approach for the development of airports for the Greater Capital Region.

“The Department of Transportation (DOTr) is looking at these various options they now have on the table. So, they have to decide this together with the airport, the Clark development and the NAIA because these are all going to affect each other,” Pecson said.

Other groups are also interested to build new airports to serve the country’s capital given congestion at the NAIA.

The NAIA handled 39.5 million passengers last year, well above its designed capacity of 31 million passengers.

All-Asia Resources and Reclamation Corp. (ARRC), composed of the Tieng family and SM Group’s Belle Corp., intends to build an international airport, seaport, as well as mixed use development on reclaimed land off the coast of Sangley Point in Cavite.

ARRC is likewise planning to rehabilitate the present Danilo Atienza Airport in Sangley, as well as build a terminal and operate it to accommodate general aviation aircraft and low-cost carriers, at a cost of P1 billion.

SMC has also proposed to build a new international airport for Metro Manila to be located in Bulacan.

Asked if the Ayala Group would be interested to join any of the two proposals for a new international airport, Almendras said “we’ll make the decision when the time comes.”

As the government wants to position Clark as an alternative to the NAIA, there are also plans to implement projects to support the Clark International Airport’s development.

Roberto Lim, DOTr undersecretary for the aviation sector earlier said the department is reviewing airport proposals from the private sector, including those covering the development of the Clark International Airport.

The group of GMR-Megawide submitted a proposal to the government to develop the Clark International Airport over a period of 50 years for close to P200 billion. The development will enable it to handle up to 100 million passengers per year.

Under the P187-billion proposal of JG Summit Holdings Inc. and Filinvest Development Corp.,

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