Gov’t chooses open bidding for Naia rehab, snubs MIAC offer | Inquirer News

Gov’t chooses open bidding for Naia rehab, snubs MIAC offer

Gov’t chooses open bidding for Naia rehab, snubs MIAC offer.

Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Arsenio Balisacan. (INQUIRER FILE PHOTO)

MANILA, Philippines — The National Economic and Development Authority (Neda) Board on Wednesday approved the rehabilitation of Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Naia) under a P170-billion solicited proposal scheme, effectively junking the unsolicited bid of a consortium of billionaires valued at P267 billion.

Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Arsenio Balisacan said the winning bidder for this key public-private partnership (PPP) deal would be announced within the year.


“The goal of the project is to address longstanding issues at Naia, such as the inadequate capacity of passenger terminal buildings and restricted aircraft movement,” Balisacan said at a Palace briefing. “It aims to increase the current annual airport capacity from 35 million to at least 62 million passengers. The Naia PPP project also aims to increase air traffic movement from 40 to 48 per hour.”


According to the Neda chief, the government is “in a hurry” to rehabilitate Naia, saying that “as of the moment, the experience has not been good.”

He said the project was also expected to “improve the overall passenger experience and service quality to prevent long queues, lengthy waiting time and other passenger inconveniences.”


“As early as next year, we can have the project started and yes, it will cover all terminals, including all the facilities in both the runways,” he said.” So, we are in a hurry to address the issues there in the terminal because tourism is one of the main drivers of the Philippine economy in the coming years and we want to ensure that tourists come here and have good experience.”

MIAC ‘understands’

As this developed, the shunned Manila International Airport Consortium (MIAC) put on a brave face and said passengers will benefit from the Naia rehabilitation project regardless if it will proceed with the solicited or unsolicited bidding process.

In a statement on Thursday, MIAC said it “understands” the government approval to place the project under a solicited bid process, where the initiative to bid out a contract package comes from the government.

This is in contrast to an unsolicited bid process which is initiated by a private sector proponent.

“MIAC is one with the government on its infrastructure priorities, and is aligned with the Department of Transportation and Neda’s commitment to the urgent task of revitalizing Naia given its importance as the country’s main international gateway,” the group said.

MIAC had sought to double Naia’s passenger capacity to 62.5 million per year by 2028, from the current 31 million. It also proposed to shorten the processing time of passengers through automated boarding gates and self check-in and bag-drop upgrades, among others.

MIAC is made up of Aboitiz InfraCapital Inc., AC Infrastructure Holdings Corp., Asia’s Emerging Dragon Corp., Alliance Global-Infracorp Development Inc., Filinvest Development Corp., JG Summit Infrastructure Holdings Corp. and Global Infrastructure Partners.

Cost of upgrade

Transport Undersecretary Roberto Lim earlier placed the estimated cost of Naia upgrade at P141 billion.

According to Lim, the chosen private concessionaire would be asked to pay an upfront cost of P30 billion and annuity payment of P2 billion. The government will also have a share in Naia’s revenue from commercial and noncommercial operations.

The main difference between the proposals was the length of the concession period: MIAC wanted 25 years while the government provided for only 15 years.

Infrawatch PH convenor Terry Ridon said the approval of the solicited proposal “balances the government interest to expedite the (Naia) rehabilitation… through private sector capital and the public interest of reasonable airport fees during the concession period.”

“MIAC may opt to participate in the solicited bid if it continues to believe that it can provide the project’s best vision, service and pricing at Neda’s approved project cost,” Ridon added.

Aside from the Naia rehabilitation, Balisacan said, the Neda board also approved the P7.48-billion Samar Pacific Coastal Road II Project, which would improve the existing roads between Laoang Island and mainland Samar Island with the total length of 15 km.

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The Neda board also approved the unsolicited P12.75-billion proposal for the upgrade, expansion, operation and maintenance of the Laguindingan International Airport Project in Misamis Oriental.


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TAGS: Arsenio Balisacan, Manila International Airport Consortium, NAIA rehabilitation, National Economic and Development Authority, Ninoy Aquino International Airport

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