Clark airport posts record growth


Pampanga’s Clark International Airport proved its worth as an emerging budget airline hub as it posted healthy growth in 2012, driven mainly by demand for low-cost travel.

Clark International Airport Corp. (CIAC) said the airport overcame its distance from Metro Manila, reporting a 71-percent growth in the number of passengers using the facility, totaling 1.3 million for 2012, up from 767,000 passengers in 2011.

“Clark airport achieved unprecedented growth on the strength of budget travel that encouraged passengers coming from Northern and Central Luzon and as far as Metro Manila and Southern Tagalog to experience Clark,” CIAC president and CEO Victor Jose Luciano said in a report to Transportation Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya.

In the report, a copy of which was obtained by the Inquirer, Luciano said Clark was now home to eight budget airlines.

This was more than any other airport in the Philippines, he claimed.

Clark mainly serves the international market, with international passengers accounting for 1.01 million, 77 percent of total volume.

Clark’s domestic passengers also surged when Air Asia Inc., Airphil Express and Southeast Asian Airlines (SEAir)-Tiger commenced domestic flights from April 2012 to the country’s prime tourist destinations.

AirAsia Inc. is the local affiliate of budget airline giant AirAsia Berhad, Airphil Express is the sister firm of Philippine Airlines, and SEAir-Tiger is a partnership between local leisure carrier SEAir and Singapore’s Tiger Airways.

Luciano said the government’s “pocket open skies” policy, which promoted airports outside Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Naia) in Manila, helped boost Clark’s appeal.

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  • jeric pediglorio

    Nung umuwi ako ng Pampanga from Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Nagbakasyun kami ng family ko sa Hongkong-Macao at sa Clark kami lagi lumilipad, 2 beses na ito. Madami kaming nakasabay na hindi taga Pampanga, meron mga taga Caloocan, Manila, Bulacan at iba pang lugar na pinili lumilipad doon kesa sa NAIA. Dami din nakapark na nagbabayad ng PARK AND FLY sa airport na I am sure karamihan ng mga nandun e mga taga labas ng Pampanga. Wala sa distansya kung bakit pinipili nila ang Clark, kundi yung di ka nagrurush ba na umabot sa aiport na matraffic at magulo na tulad ng sa NAIA. 

    Sana magawa na kagad tong extension na terminal, coz ang inconvenience lang e yung lalakad ka pa ng tarmac papunta ng plane kesa dumaan ka sa mga bridges. At explanation pala dito e nagbabayad ng 5,000-7,000 and airlines kapag gagamitin ang mga bridges na yan per flight, so para makatipid ayun pinapalakaran na lang sa tarmac yung mga pasahero. Pero I am proud of our airport, nanalo din siya na 3rd best freeport airport sa buung mundo last year. So expansion at new annex terminal ang kelangan niya para mas maging maganda pa performance niya at malapit na mangyari na maging main gateway ang Clark International Airport ng Pinas at di na ang NAIA 1

  • jeric pediglorio

    As the Philippine and Chinese governments deal with the scandal-driven and long-delayed Northrail project, the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) is still eyeing alternatives to make the airport in Clark, Pampanga more accessible.

    A high-speed rail over the North Luzon Expressway (NLEx), an existing toll road, remains one of the alternatives, a DOTC official said. 

    “We are undertaking a study on the airport express to connect Metro Manila to Clark through a high-speed rail, using the old PNR (Philippine National Railway) alignment or the NLEx alignment to connect Metro Manila to Clark,” explained DOTC undersecretary for planning Rene Limcaoco. 

    Most parts of the PNR alignment are currently the same tracks meant for the scuttled roll out of the Northrail project, which was hounded by legal and regulatory issues. 

    Several groups questioned the financial agreement for the Northrail project between former President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo and the Chinese state-owned contractor Sinomach (previously called China National Machinery and Engineering Group or CNMEG). 

    The continuation of the Northrail project remains uncertain following heightened territorial dispute between the Philippines and China over areas in the South China Sea. 

    China has also called on the Philippine government to pay the US$500 million loan supposedly extended by China to Northrail following the Supreme Court decision handed down in March giving a lower court the go-signal to hear the case calling for the annulment of the allegedly overpriced contract.

  • jeric pediglorio

    New passenger terminal…The surge in passenger traffic at the Clark International Airport (CIA) in Pampanga is expected to hit 2.4 million each year starting 2013, Limacaoco said. Speaking before the 38th Philippine Business Conference on October 10, Limcaoco said that the Clark airport is expected to handle up to 1.2 million by end of 2012. “By 2013, it expects 2.4 million passengers per year,” he said, adding that passenger traffic may even hit 4.5 million by 2020.The DOTC is assisting the Clark International Airport Corp. (CIAC) for its plan to construct a new passenger terminal by financing a feasibility study-worth P100 million-aimed at transforming the airport as the country’s main international airport, replacing the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Naia) in Manila.“Clark International Airport is being expanded to accommodate growth. We will be building an annex next to the terminal,” said Limcaoco.

  • jeric pediglorio

    Plans for new airport facility at Clark in Pampanga by 2015 are underway as the government pursues a feasibility study for a P12 billion budget terminal facility that could accommodate 10 million passengers a year. 

    The results of the study are required before the government could auction the airport project under the Aquino government’s public-private partnership program for infrastructure. 

    The study, which a top airport official said Asia Foundation will conduct for free, will be completed by end of March or early April, thus making the project bidding possible this year. 

    “We expect the study to be concluded by end of March or first week of April. I will then brief the DOTC (Department of Transportation and Communications) secretary about it,” said Clark International Airport Corp. (CIAC) president Victor Luciano in an interview.This mode pursues a competitive public bidding, which is at the core of the PPP strategy. Previously, the groups of local conglomerates Metro Pacific Investment Corp and San Miguel Corp. separately pursued the Clark airport terminal as an unsolicited project.

    • jeric pediglorio

      I already asked their customer service in Clark about this study and said that they are still doing the study. I am bothered, why will a “free study” take more than a year to finish?

  • Tamarindwalk

    Clark could really be developed into the new international airport if someone would get off their backsides and get the rail link between Metro Manila and Clark completed.  But that’s mired in corruption like so many other projects and is delayed beyond belief.

  • UPLB-2008-3****

    Oh, what now, “eh-ang-layo-kasi-sa-Manila-kaya-di-feasible” naysayers? 

  • CyberPinoy

    THey should fund a hookup of MRT Train to clark, that way Clark Airport will have its boom time.

    • Joseph

      World class MRT train service please. :D

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