Gov’t eyes P10B for airports upgrade
The government has set aside P10.1 billion of its P3.767 trillion budget for 2018 to upgrade 27 of the country’s busiest airports with Clark International in Pampanga getting the lion’s share, a lawmaker said on Saturday.
“Clark is getting P2.74 billion to enable it to cope with more flights, especially at night,” said Makati City Rep. Luis Campos Jr., a deputy minority leader.
Aside from Clark, Kalibo Airport in Aklan was alloted P920 million, Bicol International Airport in Albay P899.68 million, Tacloban Airport in Leyte P716.12 million and Bukidnon Airport P425 million.
Fourteen other busy airports will get from P100 million to P245 million each while four others will get P50 million to P84.2 million.
Campos said 13 other smaller airports across the country would also get a combined P262.61 million, or an average of P20.20 million each, for infrastructure upgrades.
The Department of Transportation has been building up Clark in Angeles City, as an alternative to the congested Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Naia).
Moreover, Clark serves as the alternative aiport whenever the main 3,737-meter long runway of Naia is temporarily closed.
“The target is to have Clark’s two 3,200-meter long runways operating at night, and eventually extend both runways, possibly to 5,000 meters, to accommodate bigger aircraft,” the congressman said.
From January to July this year, the Clark airport handled a daily average of 20 international flights with 3,078 passengers plus 12 domestic flights with 1,058 passengers, according to the state-run Clark International Airport Corp.
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