JAL executive eyes Clark-Narita flights

CLARK FREEPORT -- An official of the Japan Airlines (JAL) has announced the possibility that the Japanese carrier will mount Clark to Narita flights.

Kazuhiro Ishida, JAL country manager to the Philippines, said his management team is impressed with the potential of Clark International Airport (CRK).

Ishida assured Clark airport officials, headed by Alexander Cauguiran, that he will propose to JAL’s Tokyo headquarters the mounting of Clark-Narita flights.

Ishida issued the statement at the heels of a dialogue on Thursday between JAL executives and Clark International Airport Corporation (CIAC) officials for possible servicing of Clark-Narita flights via Jetstar Japan, a subsidiary of JAL which currently flies daily to Narita, Osaka and Nagoya at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).

“There is a huge demand of passengers especially OFWs (overseas Filipino workers) and will propose an initial Clark-Narita route.” Ishida added.

Accompanying Ishida during the meeting are other JAL executives Koji Yamazaki, Herr Obusan, Erwin Dela Cruz, and Kazunobu Akutsu, Defense Attache of the Embassy of Japan, who were incidentally coordinating with CIAC officials the forthcoming arrival of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in the country for the ASEAN Summit.

“We welcome JAL’s proposal as it will now be able to lure business travelers to CRK’s connectivity to tourist destinations like Palawan, Davao and Boracay and Clark Freeport’s world class hotels and recreation facilities,” Cauguiran said.

He added that the influx of Japanese tourists will boost the local hotel industry and business communities in the Central and Northern Luzon regions.

CRK’s new terminal building, which is now being constructed, can take in eight million passengers annually, a huge addition to the existing 4.2 million passengers per year.

The new airport terminal is scheduled to be finished by the first quarter of 202.

The project was spearheaded by Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade and Bases Conversion and Development Authority President Vince Dizon who also led the bidding last August 22 for the Engineering, Procurement and Construction (EPC) Contract.

According to Cauguiran, other negotiations for direct flights from Clark to the US, Beijing, Kuala Lumpur, Taiwan, and Thailand are ongoing.
CRK serves a growing network of nine domestic and eight international destinations and is connected to various global destinations via the networks of Emirates, Qatar, Cathay Pacific, Asiana, and China Eastern.
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