By Denise A. Valdez
THE Department of Transportation (DoTr) plans to submit to the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) in the next few days the unsolicited proposal of the “super consortium” to rehabilitate the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA), months after the group bagged original proponent status (OPS).
Asked for an update on the consortium’s NAIA rehabilitation proposal, Transportation Undersecretary for Planning Ruben S. Reinoso, Jr. said the department received late last week the updated submission from the Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA).
“We’re evaluating MIAA submission. (We received it) just last Friday. We’ll try (to give it to NEDA) before New Year,” he said in a text message on Monday.
Last September, the government awarded the consortium of seven of the country’s top conglomerates — dubbed as a “super consortium” or “NAIA consortium” — OPS for its proposal to rehabilitate and expand the country’s main air service gateway.
The group consists of Aboitiz InfraCapital, Inc.; 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., with Changi Airports International Private Ltd. as technical partner.
Transportation Undersecretary for Aviation Manuel Antonio L. Tamayo told reporters on Friday that the proposal was “with MIAA” which was “doing the final project evaluation report, and it is due to be submitted on or before 3 p.m. this afternoon to DoTr.”
“And then from DoTr, sa amin mabilis lang ’yan eh [it will be quick from our end]. Pagka [If] everything is complete… we’ll send it to NEDA,” Mr. Tamayo said.
The group’s rehabilitation proposal covers the expansion of the existing terminals and building new taxiways at NAIA.
It originally included construction of a third runway, but the DoTr opted to remove this segment and instead have it as an option for expansion.
Mr. Tamayo noted that, after the consortium bagged OPS in September, MIAA found “many” “technical” issues in the proposal that needed to be reviewed. “I can’t reveal the details, pero marami pang nakitang issues [but there were several issues seen]. It’s more about the project details. Technical.”
Mr. Tamayo said the consortium’s proposed timetable puts a Swiss challenge in the second quarter of next year, while construction is targeted to begin by September.
The group’s original submission in February was for a P350-billion, 35-year contract to rehabilitate and expand NAIA.
It eventually had to trim costs to P102 billion and the concession period to 15 years after comments from the DoTr.
The development of NAIA is seen as a solution to decongest the airport, which accommodated 42 million passengers last year, way beyond its 30.5 million capacity.
The consortium targets to expand annual capacity at NAIA to 47 million in two years and further to 65 million in four years.