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Clark Airport gets P2.8B for 2nd terminal

/ 12:26 AM January 21, 2017

The government has started funding a new passenger terminal at Clark International Airport in Pampanga, in step with a plan to increase activity at the underutilized air gateway.

Clark International Airport Corp. (CIAC), which operates the gateway, said on Friday that an initial P2.8 billion had “already been released” for the construction of a second passenger terminal at Clark Airport.

This will double the airport’s capacity to eight million passengers a year, it said.

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The second terminal is scheduled for construction within the next three years, theCIAC said in a statement.

Clark Airport, an alternative to Manila’s Ninoy Aquino International Airport, has a capacity of four million passengers a year.

However, it has been handling less than half of that volume as it struggles to lure traffic. A major reason for this was its distance from Metro Manila and the lack of mass transit options to and from the capital district.

To address this, the Department of Transportation has committed to build a railway line linking Clark International Airport to Metro Manila, and possibly to Naia. Details of that plan, however, have yet to be divulged.

In previous statements, CIAC said the new passenger terminal would cost some P7.2 billion and would cater mainly to low-cost carriers. French firm Aeroport De Paris was tapped to design the project.

CIAC made the announcement as it also sought to drum up interest in Clark via a “North Philippines roadshow” this week.

“We are following the lead of President Duterte’s directive to develop the premier airport of the North,” Alexander Cauguiran, president and CEO of state-run Clark International Airport Corp., said in the statement.

“The only way to decongest Metro Manila is to further develop  Clark Airport,” he added.

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Early steps have been taken to lure traffic to Clark.   Flag carrier Philippine Airlines started Clark operations last December, with flights to Caticlan (Boracay Airport), followed by flights to Incheon, South Korea.

It is also set to start domestic flights via Cebu, Davao and Puerto Princesa in the coming months.  Cebu Pacific via Hong Kong, Macau and Singapore with domestic flights to Cebu which had increased frequencies from four to six times weekly.

Clark Airport also serves other carriers such as Qatar Airways, Emirates Airlines, Cathay Dragon, Asiana Airlines and Jin Air.

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