THE Department of Transportation (DOTr) through the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (Caap) plans to expand the Francisco Bangoy International Airport or the Davao International Airport (DIA) next year.
Caap-Davao City area manager Agnes Udang said that the expansion will address the growing number of passengers going in and out the airport.
“Definitely we will expand. This is because we noticed that there is an increase of total number of passengers here as compared the previous years,” Udang said.
In a data obtained by SunStar Davao from Caap-Davao, DIA has a total of 936,828 incoming travelers and 997,004 outgoing travelers from January to June of this year. This is up as compared to 864,598 incoming passengers and 921,241 outgoing passengers in the same period last year.
According to Udang, the expansion will include an additional bay to accommodate one boarding bridge.
The planned expansion would address the clamor for a bigger airport terminal by the tourism sector.
Meanwhile, Davao City Tourism Operations Office head Generose Tecson earlier said that the improvement and rehabilitation of the Davao airport will be more immediate once Davao International Airport Authority will be established.
“Caap is doing what it can with whatever funds that they have. If a Davao International Airport Authority is created, there will be cash back-ups," Tecson said.
She added that improvement of the airport will bring good impression to Davao City as a whole.
For his part, Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc. president Ronald Go said a modern airport with functioning facilities makes a guest feel upbeat right away than those welcomed by a run-down airport.
“The creation of a Davao International Airport Authority is definitely a welcome development. With a government owned and controlled corporation focused on improving the facilities and services at the Davao airport, this bodes well for the tourism sector initially and augurs well eventually in attracting businessmen to our city,” said Go.
Surigao del Sur Representative Johnny Pimentel of PDP-Laban recently re-filed the bill calling for the creation of the authority. He is also a member of the House Committee on Transportation and Mindanao affairs.
Currently, the bill is waiting for approval since the 16th Congress and it has been revived in the 17th Congress with the support of Senator Juan Miguel Zubiri and Deputy Speaker and Davao City Second District Representative Mylene Garcia-Albano.