The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) eyes seven more airports in the country to be night-rated beginning this year.
CAAP acting director general Capt. Manuel Antonio Tamayo said the agency intends to pursue efforts to enable more regional airports to accommodate night-time take-off and landing, thereby increasing their flight frequencies on account of longer operating hours.
Tamayo said the CAAP supports the commitments of Transportation Secretary Jaime Bautista to President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr.
In his first State of the Nation Address on July 25, Marcos vowed to upgrade provincial airports and create more international ones to boost the domestic tourism industry.
“We will first and foremost make basic developments such as road improvements for easier access to tourism spots. We will also upgrade our airports and create more international airports to help decongest the bottleneck in the Manila airport,” Marcos said.
Tamayo said in line with the government’s vision to enhance the aviation sector, the CAAP has completed the night rating of 23 major and commercial airports, with 11 airports being successfully night-rated over the last six years.
The agency said starting this year, seven more airports would be equipped with the necessary facilities to accommodate night-time flights.
“CAAP vows to actively pursue and champion Secretary Bautista’s commitment to President Marcos’ goals for the aviation sector by pushing for efforts that will increase the capacity of our facilities and improving the safety and security of our airports also in accordance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) standards,” Tamayo said.
Equipping airports with night-rating capabilities will allow the facilities to accommodate flights even after sunset, which will help provide air travelers with flight options.
Previously, domestic flights from Manila were being crammed during the daytime because of the inability of many provincial airports to receive flights at nighttime, contributing to the overcrowding at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport which has only two runways handling both international and domestic flights.
Provincial airports that were unable to operate at night have to send out all Manila-bound flights during the day.
The government recently disclosed it has completed various projects aimed to improve and upgrade several airports nationwide.
Among the notable projects include the Mactan-Cebu International Airport (MCIA), Bohol-Panglao International Airport (BPIA), New Clark International Airport (CIA), Bicol International Airport (BIA), including the increasing of night-rated airports and successfully installed additional 13 Communications, Navigation Surveillance / Air Traffic Management (CNS/ATM) system, ensuring the 100 percent coverage of the airspace of the country. Joel E. Zurbano