By Cai Ordinario, June 17 2019; Business Mirror

Image Credit to Business Mirror

An unsolicited Mactan-Cebu International Airport (MCIA) Terminal 3 project is now being evaluated by the National Economic and Development Authority (Neda), according to GMR Megawide Cebu Airport Corp.

In a briefing in Cebu, GMR Chief Executive Adviser Andrew Acquaah-Harrison said the P208-billion extension involves the construction of a third terminal for the airport along with two runways and aircraft maintenance hangar.

Harrison said the project will also feature an underground train network and entails a reclamation of 300 hectares of land. The details of the project are part of a master plan that aims to extend the current concession agreement by another 25 years.

“We hope we are successful and if we are, this airport [all three terminals] will have an overall capacity of 60 million passengers,” Harrison said.

The update to the airport, Harrison said, aims not only to be able to serve more passengers but also create more jobs for local workers.

Harrison said the introduction of a maintenance and overhaul repair of aircraft facilities is particularly important given that this will introduce new skill sets to workers.

He said GMR has already submitted its answers to the questionnaire given to them by the Investment Coordination Committee (ICC) on the unsolicited project.

“Neda has a subcommittee called ICC; it’s before this committee at the moment, they asked us for details of our stakeholder consultations,” Harrison said.

“We have provided answers to the very detailed questionnaire that was given to us. After the approval, it would then go for Swiss Challenge,” he added.

Harrison said the additional terminal will serve domestic passengers. He said this is because GMR believes the future of tourism in Cebu and in the country in general are still local travelers.

He said the airport, including domestic traffic, is expected to host 13.5 million passengers this year. This is already higher than their projections given that the traffic has increased by about 23 percent annually for the past three years.

Currently, the passenger traffic in the airport is 12.5 million. In 2018, Harrison said, the passengers going through the airport was just below 12 million.  “Essentially we have outgrown our own forecast. We are achieving roughly on international side around 23 percent passenger growth almost every year for the past three years. And we’re achieving domestic growth of about 13 percent,” Harrison said. “We’ve added 6 million passengers in five years.”

The ICC is one of the seven subcommittees under the Neda Board, the highest policy-making body of the Neda. The Neda Board is chaired by the President. The ICC consists of the Secretary of DOF as chairman, with the Secretary of socioeconomic planning and Neda Director General as cochairman.

The Executive Secretary, the Cabinet Secretary, the Secretaries of Budget and Management, Energy, Trade and Industry, and the Governor of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas are also members.