Subic airport poised for take off as major aviation hub
The Subic Bay International Airport (SBIA) is preparing to take off as a major aviation hub with plans to turn it into a base by a regional budget air carrier and other efforts to woo back logistics giant FedEx.
Wilma Eisma, Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA) chair and administrator, said the SBMA was already laying down finishing touches on the airport as navigation facilities dismantled during the time of former President Benigno Aquino III were being procured already.
The SBMA had been spending P533 million to rebuild and modernize the airport, said Eisma.
While the navigation equipment will be up and running by December, the SBMA is already preparing for clients for commercial operations to come in by middle of next year, said Eisma.
A major budget airline, which Eisma did not name, was considering moving its hub to Subic as Ninoy Aquino International Airport was already too crowded.
“They have been looking at Subic,” Eisma said.
Eisma added that she was trying to set up a meeting with aerospace giant Boeing in November and trying to woo back FedEx.
FedEx left Subic in 2009 after it relocated its Asian hub to China.
Eisma said SBMA wanted the Subic airport to have a niche to set it apart from the Clark International Airport.
“We may focus on chartered or domestic flights, until we build credibility and capacity,” she said.
According to Eisma, Subic’s airport was currently hosting flying schools, firms involved in aircraft maintenance and repair, as well as visiting armed forces, such as those from the United States who were in town for the Balikatan exercises./TSB
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.