BACOLOD

Bacolod-Silay Airport privatization underway?

IS THE privatization of the Bacolod-Silay Airport underway?

This came following the reports that Davao-based businessman Dennis Uy has submitted an unsolicited proposal to take over the Bacolod-Silay Airport, which is also being contested by a foreign company.

Reports have it that Udenna Infrastructure Corporation’s unsolicited proposal is for the expansion, augmentation, operations, and maintenance of Bacolod-Silay Airport which has been submitted to the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (Caap).

Another unsolicited proposal according to a SunStar Bacolod source is from Canada’s Airtrav Inc.

Both unsolicited proposals were submitted to Caap last December.

The Bacolod-Silay Airport was one of the five regional airports under a bundled public-private partnership structure prior to a policy shift from the Department of Transportation.

When reached for comment, Bacolod City Representative Greg Gasataya said this is the first time he heard such development about the airport.

“I will look into the matter first if it's a joint venture or the airport will be privatized,” he said.

“On my part, based on my superficial view, it would be beneficial for us because the runway would be extended, which means international flights would be accommodated because it is the requirement to become an international airport,” he said.

He said that the airport terminal at this point needs rehabilitation and expansion including the repairs of comfort rooms, air-conditioning system, and additional x-ray machines.

However, such expansion project would affect the terminal fees, which must also be considered, he said.

“We have to clarify first if it's a joint venture or privatization and how much will it cost the government or how long the contract would be,” Gasataya pointed out.

He also recalled that during the Speakership of Davao Del Norte Representative Pantaleon Alvarez, the Committee on Transportation has already planned a package for the Bacolod-Silay Airport but it did not push through.

“I am in favor on the aspect of extending the runway cause it's long overdue,” Gasataya added.


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