Existing Naia location favored, survey shows
Most Filipinos are optimistic about the rehabilitation of Manila’s Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Naia), according to a March 2018 survey conducted by Social Weather Stations (SWS).
The findings were included in a statement released over the weekend by Naia Consortium, which submitted in February an unsolicited offer to upgrade and operate Naia, which was suffering from growing congestion.
The statement, citing the SWS survey, said 57 percent of respondents were “hopeful that Naia will be rehabilitated.” It added that 29 percent were undecided while 14 percent were “not hopeful.”
The statement, which did not indicate who commissioned the survey, also noted that most Filipinos (62 percent) favored Naia’s existing location as the government opens the door to future potential replacements. Some 22 percent wanted Clark International Airport, 9 percent voted for Cavite and 6 percent favored Bulacan.
Details on the methodology used in the SWS were not revealed in the statement.
“We are ready to start construction right after we get the notice to proceed (NTP) and deliver the first phase of expanding Naia’s capacity by 2020. We can make this hope and dream into a reality in just two years’ time from NTP issuance,” Jimbo Reverente, Naia Consortium spokesperson, said in the statement.
Naia Consortium’s members are Ayala Corp., Aboitiz Equity Ventures, Alliance Global Group Inc., Asia Emerging Dragon, Filinvest Development Corp, JG Summit Holdings Inc. and Metro Pacific Investments Corp. Its technical partner is Changi Airports International.
Reverente also underscored the consortium’s ability to move fast, noting that funding and designs for the rehabilitation of Naia are ready.
The consortium is waiting for the government’s decision on the granting of an original proponent status.
Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade said last month that the department had recommended the awarding of the original proponent status. He said the concession period would run 15 years.
Naia is currently serving more than 40 million passengers yearly, above its design capacity of 31 million passengers a year.
The figure is expected to hit 47 million passengers yearly by 2020, Naia Consortium said.
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