CLARK FREEPORT, Pampanga—Officials of the Clark International Airport Corp. welcomed the proposal to transfer the excess domestic flights of airline companies, including privately-owned aircraft, to the international airport here to decongest Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila.
Alexander Cauguiran, president and CEO of CIAC, said they have enough space to accommodate the excess domestic flights of airline companies and private aircraft at CRK.
The Clark civil aviation complex is the biggest in the country, composed of 2,367 hectares of land divided into airport use and leased land to investors and locators for aviation-related services and logistics activities, Cauguiran said.
Clark airport has 30 hectares of land available anytime for the proposal of House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez to move the flights from Naia under a “complete terminal rationalization plan” for the safety, comfort and convenience of the passengers, he added.
“We are more than willing to accept the transfer of domestic flights here,” Cauguiran said during a media forum here.
“Under the plan, Naia Terminals 1 and 3 will be used for international flights while Terminals 2 and 4 for domestic flights doable within 45 days, but extended to six months,” Alvarez said.
The country’s main airport was designed with a capacity of only 31 million passengers a year and is now accommodating 42 million a year, the Speaker added.
In contrast, Clark, Cauguiran said, does not experience air or land congestion nor gets flooded due to its elevation of 484 feet above sea level. It is complete with air navigational equipment for the safety, comfort and convenience of the passengers, he added.
CIAC was able to increase the flights to and from CRK through vigorous marketing efforts here and abroad. A total of 152 international and 300 domestic flights (arrival and departure) log in at CRK with an average of 63 flights a day by 13 airline companies as of March 1, Cauguiran added.
The construction of the P12.9-billion additional passenger terminal is now in the mobilization stage, he said. Come third quarter of 2018, actual construction will take place and will be operational before the end of the year, the CIAC chief added.
The construction will include a new terminal, taxiing road, a five-kilometer road direct to the Subic Clark Tarlac Expressway, a central transport terminal and a wide area for welcoming relatives of the passengers. The new passenger terminal will increase CRK’s capacity from 4 million persons to 12 to million a year.
Cauguiran added CIAC will always protect the interests of the regular 280 employees affected by the privatization of the airport, “but as of now all we can do is to wait for the terms of reference of the winning bidder,” he said.
Every Friday, about 400 employees belonging to the Samahang ng mga Manggagawa ng Diosdado Macapagal International Airport have been protesting in the front of the CIAC office demanding more information from Vince Dizon, president and CEO of the Bases Conversion Development Authority through Cauguiran.
The privatization of the operation and maintenance of airport including the two terminals is now approved by the National Economic Development Authority Investment Coordinating Council is still subject for approval of the board headed by President Duterte.