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NAIA consortium may secure OPS for airport rehab project in two weeks — Tugade

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The country’s seven biggest conglomerates submitted on Feb. 12, their unsolicited proposal to the Department of Transportation (DOTr) to rehabilitate the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) and transform it into a regional airport hub. — HANDOUT PHOTO FROM ABOITIZ EQUITY VENTURES

The Department of Transportation (DOTr) is eyeing to grant in two weeks the original proponent status (OPS) to the consortium of seven conglomerates seeking to rehabilitate the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).

Transportation Secretary Arthur P. Tugade told reporters in a forum at Manila Marriott Hotel in Pasay City that they have received the revised proposal of the NAIA consortium, which cut the project duration from 35 years to 15 years.

“We have received it (revised proposal). It was changed from 35 (years) to 15 (years). Is it acceptable? There are still discussions… Probably in two weeks (we’ll grant the original proponent status). If it were up to me,” he said in Filipino.

Once the OPS is granted, the proposal of the original proponent will be subjected to a Swiss challenge, where other firms may try matching it. But the original proponent is allowed to present a counterproposal.

The NAIA consortium is composed of seven of the country’s top companies, namely: 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. Singapore Changi Airports International Private Ltd. is its technical partner.

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Competing against the NAIA consortium for the rehabilitation of the Manila airport is the tandem of Megawide Construction Corp. and Indian-company GMR Infrastructure Ltd. GMR-Megawide presented a $3-billion, 18-year plan nearly a month after DOTr received the first proposal.

The original proposal of the NAIA consortium intended to build a third runway to ease the passenger congestion at the airport. NAIA handled 42 million passengers last year, way beyond its designed capacity of 30.5 million people. — Denise A. Valdez

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