Filinvest, JGS tap Changi for Clark proposal

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FILINVEST Development Corp. (FDC) and JG Summit Holdings, Inc. (JGS) submitted a new unsolicited proposal worth P839 billion to develop Clark International Airport as the country’s second international gateway.

In a disclosure to the stock exchange on Tuesday, FDC said the consortium is proposing a joint venture for the long-term development of Clark airport with the Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) and the Department of Transportation (DoTr).

The Gotianun-Gokongwei consortium also tapped Singapore’s Changi Airports International (CAI) as its technical partner for the project. CAI, a global aviation consultant, is a wholly owned subsidiary of Changi Airport Group which operates Singapore’s main gateway.

“This proposal is different from the one earlier submitted by the consortium as it does not include the construction of the second terminal building but instead proposes the long-term development of the airport into the country’s second international gateway and also includes the operation and maintenance of the existing and new terminals under a joint venture with BCDA,” the consortium’s statement read.

Under the proposal, FDC-JGS consortium will also build future capacity augmentation, expand airport facilities such as terminals and runways, alongside operating and maintaining the existing and new passenger terminals.

The consortium also offered to develop, operate and maintain Clark airport’s commercial assets, such as facilities for general aviation, fixed-base operations and real estate.

In January, Filinvest and JG Summit submitted to the government a P186.64-billion unsolicited proposal for the expansion of Clark’s passenger terminal building. The unsolicited proposal had a concession period of 50 years and covers the improvement of current facilities at the Clark International Airport; capacity augmentation in five phases to accommodate 36 million passengers annually; and operations and maintenance of the airport.

However, the DoTr rejected the unsolicited proposals for Clark airport. Instead, it opted to build the infrastructure, and to  bid out the operations and maintenance contract to the private sector.   

The BCDA has already started the bidding for the selection of the engineering, procurement, and construction contractor for the first phase of expansion for Clark airport. The BCDA earlier said 12 local and foreign firms bought the bid documents, with the deadline for submission set on Dec. 5. The winning bidder will be announced on Dec. 15.

The bidding for the operation and management of Clark airport is also expected to commence before the end of the year.

Other firms that have expressed interest in Clark airport are Metro Pacific Investments Corp., Megawide Construction Corp., and MacroAsia Corp.

Clark airport is seen as an alternative to congested Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA), which has four terminals and two runways. NAIA was built to handle 30 million capacity, but passenger traffic hit a total of 39.5 million in 2016.

With the construction of a new passenger terminal, Clark airport is set to accommodate 12.2 million passengers annually, up by 8 million from its current capacity of 4.2 million passengers.

The BCDA’s long-term vision is for Clark airport to handle 80 million passengers every year, once the fourth phase of the airport’s expansion is completed. — A.B. Francia

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