Privatization of Clark airport gets gov’t nod

Economic managers on Friday green-lighted the proposed private sector participation to operate and maintain the Clark International Airport, which is being developed as the country’s second major gateway by 2020.

Since the Clark International Airport Operations and Maintenance Project was already approved by the National Economic and Development Authority’s Investment Coordination Committee (ICC)-Cabinet Committee, it will be next up for President Duterte’s approval at a still unscheduled meeting of the Neda Board, which he chairs.

The public-private partnership (PPP) project will be rolled out by the Department of Transportation and the state-run Bases Conversion and Development Authority.

Located within the Clark Special Economic and Freeport Zone in Angeles City, Pampanga, the airport is being considered to become the major gateway to Central and Northern Luzon, which are among the fastest-growing regions, the PPP Center said on its website.

The project is aimed at attracting not only more airlines but also additional passengers from the airport’s catchment area.

As such, the operations and maintenance contract will cover not only the existing facilities but also the new passenger terminal buildings to be constructed in the airport.

The construction of the P12.6-billion new, state-of-the-art passenger terminal in Clark International Airport already broke ground in December last year.

Last year, Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III said the expansion of the airport was among the first big-ticket infrastructure projects to be built using the Duterte administration’s “hybrid” PPP formula, in which the government starts the initial phase of the project’s construction and later bids out the project to the private sector. —BEN O. DE VERA


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