Aboitiz unit revises unsolicited proposal for Laguindingan airport

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By Denise A. Valdez

THE Department of Transportation (DoTr) said Aboitiz InfraCapital, Inc. (AIC) has submitted a revised unsolicited proposal for the development of the Laguindingan Airport.

Transportation Undersecretary for Planning Ruben S. Reinoso, Jr. told BusinessWorld in a text message on Tuesday it received a revised submission of the P42.7-billion proposal from AIC to operate, maintain and expand the Laguindingan Airport. The original proposal was submitted in August.

“Revised submission (given on) Dec. 18, 2018,” he said, noting the revised proposal will be reviewed.

“They have nominated technical partners but I don’t remember. It can change though,” Mr. Reinoso added.

AIC earlier submitted a P148-billion bundled proposal to modernize four key regional airports, namely the Iloilo International Airport, Bacolod-Silay Airport, Laguindingan Airport and New Bohol (Panglao) International Airport.

When it announced the plans in March, AIC said it wants to “transform the facilities into world-class airports every Filipino deserves and can be proud of.”

But the bundled proposal was rejected by the DoTr in April, requiring interested private entities to submit separate proposals for airport projects.

In September, AIC received original proponent status (OPS) for the operations, maintenance and expansion of the New Bohol (Panglao) International Airport.

It was able to beat Chelsea Logistics Holdings Corp. (CLC), which also gave an unsolicited proposal for the Panglao Airport and Davao International Airport. The Dennis A. Uy-led company had been granted OPS for its Davao airport proposal last October.

Aside from proposals for Panglao and Laguindingan airports, AIC is also part of the consortium that was given OPS to rehabilitate the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA). The consortium also includes AC Infrastructure Holdings Corp.; Alliance Global Group, Inc.; Asia’s Emerging Dragon Corp.; Filinvest Development Corp.; JG Summit Holdings, Inc. and Metro Pacific Investments Corp.

After getting OPS, airport proposals will have to go through the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) for evaluation, and then subjected to Swiss challenge where third party companies could contest the original proponent.