San Miguel seeks to run Manila airport for 10 years

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Credit: Read the original article from Manila Standard Business.

San Miguel Corp. said Friday its proposal for the Ninoy Aquino International Airport is for 10-year operations and maintenance to ensure that it operates better and more efficiently until the P740-billion Manila International Airport project in Bulacan province is completed.San Miguel’s proposal came after the Manila International Airport Authority revoked the original proponent status for NAIA previously given to construction firm Megawide Corp.“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. 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,” SMC president and chief operating officer Ramon Ang said.“Unlike all the proposals that required a share in the revenues of the NAIA—including passenger fees and lease rentals—we are not interested in the revenues. We want to improve NAIA for the passengers. We want it to be run more efficiently, for service levels to be improved, until the new airport is operational. All revenues will go MIAA,” he said.Ang said this was actually a part of the original proposal for the Bulacan airport development. He said while developing the airport project, it could spend for the improvement and operation of NAIA, at no cost to government, and with no share in revenues.The Department of Transportation earlier asked to remove this portion of the proposal for the Bulacan airport project.

A consortium of the country’s largest corporations earlier secured an approval to rehabilitate and operate the aging NAIA, which was operating above its capacity for many years. This did not materialize and the original proponent status was later on given to Megawide.Ang said that 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.Ang said that with a new and much larger world-class gateway with four runways just north of Manila—easily accessible via a network of existing and new infrastructure—the government could better benefit from selling or redeveloping the NAIA property.He said the 646-hectare NAIA complex, or about 2.5 times bigger than Bonifacio Global City, could potentially earn the government as much as P2 trillion or more, which it could use for various purposes.Ang said the government could earn more—and even generate more jobs—once the new commercial or residential developments rise in the area. Revenues from the new developments will most likely be higher than that of airport fees, he said.

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