DAVAO

Davao Airport Authority, soon?

DAVAO. With the airport currently being under the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP), steps to improve the airport have been quite slow. (SunStar File Photo)

THE proposal to make the Francisco Bangoy International Airport (FBIA) into an authority has already been passed by the House of Representatives while its version in the Senate is already for deliberation.

According to Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc. (DCCCII) president Arturo Milan, they are currently monitoring the passing of the proposal’s version at the Senate.

“The last we heard it was already endorsed by Senator Miguel Zubiri and that there are still points needed to be reconciled but we have yet to receive an update after that,” Milan said during a phone interview with SunStar Davao Thursday, February 7.

He added the business sector in Davao City would have wanted the authority for FBIA to take effect as soon as possible with the ultimate objective making the “premier gateway in the South.” Milan said with a local authority supervising the management of FBIA, there would be a faster improvement on the facility and service as the approval and the decision-making will be on the local level.

“Today, the approval concerns of the Davao Airport are under the central Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) but their plate is full. They are currently occupied with a lot of regional airports in the Philippines that would also need to be taken care of,” said Milan.

This push for the creation of a local authority for FBIA had long since been pushed by DCCCII as the influx of tourists coming to the city increased. In a separate interview, Milan said it is high time that the modernization of the airport be hastened.

Earlier citing a result of the study conducted by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), Milan said the useful lifespan of the FBIA is still up to 30 to 40 years as only 30 percent of its runway capacity had been utilized. This means that the primary problems to address should be the expansion of the currently-congested terminals and the putting up of taxiways. This way, the holding capacity of the airport will be increased.


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