‘Venture won’t affect airport lot sale bid’Cebu Daily News
REP. Tomas Osmeña of Cebu City’s south district was lukewarm over news of the Ayala-Aboitiz joint venture for the Mactan Cebu International Airport’s passenger terminal project.
“Cebu will have to wait another 30 years…We could have beaten Manila in 10 years. Now Bohol, Palawan, Camarines Sur and Caticlan can catch up with Cebu. I said my piece,” the congressman said.
Osmeña earlier floated the proposal to sell the airport lot after disclosing that SM Prime Holdings expressed interest in purchasing the property.
The company also sent a letter to the MCIA management signifying its interest to do so.
Osmeña proposed that the current international airport be relocated to Cordova town in order to decongest Metro Cebu’s traffic.
He said the sale of the MCIA lot would more than cover the transfer and reclamation of Cordova land for the airport site. Cordova Mayor Adelino Sitoy supported Osmeña’s proposal.
But MCIA General Manager Paul Villarete said the Ayala-Aboitiz joint venture won’t affect Osmeña’s proposal because the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) still has to study it.
“The terminal project is something we have to do now since we’re about to breach the seven million passengers mark this year on an existing terminal designed only for 4.5 million annual passengers throughout,” he said.
In an email sent to Cebu Daily News, Villarete said the concession period for the winning bidder will cover 10 to 20 years depending on the final outcome of the structure/business case.
“If indeed there is a need to transfer we can always make provisions on the contract subject to economic sensitivity analysis. It’s absurd to dismiss a proposal without studying it first. What if it’s found to be better for Cebu in the long run?,” Villarete added.
The MCIA general manager said while he’s happy with the joint venture, he expects more companies to create consortiums for their own bids for the terminal project.
“In the end it’s the government and the Filipino people who will benefit from this the most. We will just wait and see and do our jobs to prepare a very good project, which DOTC expects to submit to NEDA before the end of the month or early next month,” Villarete said.
Cebu Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia said she was informed about the joint venture by Andoni Aboitiz, chairman and CEO of Aboitiz Lands Inc. yesterday. Correspondent Carmel Loise Matus with Deputy Editor Stephen Capillas