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DOTR Sec. Bautista says PBBM has no plans to privatize NAIA

Jaime J. Bautista
DOTR Sec. Bautista clarifies issue on NAIA privatization. (JERRY S. TAN)

The assets of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) will remain with the government even if the country’s main gateway operations will be managed by the private sector should the plans to privatize push through.

Thus, Transportation Secretary Jaime J. Bautista clarified, as he echoed the statement of President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. that the government has no plans to privatize the country’s main airport, explaining that the operations will be managed only through a concession agreement.

“Ang ibig sabihin ng Presidente, hindi naman natin ibibigay sa private sector yung assets ng NAIA. Ang ibig niya sabihin, it’s the private sector who will manage the operations through a concession agreement,” Bautista said.

He explained that the concession agreement will indicate that aside from operating and maintaining the airport, the private sector will also expand and upgrade the airport facilities to deliver the required level of service (LoS) and provide improved services to passengers and other airport users.

Moreover, all improvements and upgrades done by the private sector will also be owned by the government. At the end of the concession period, the private sector will return management of airport operations to the government.

Secretary Bautista cited the cases of the Mactan-Cebu International Airport (MCIA) and the Clark International Airport (CRK), which are both operated by the private sector via a concession agreement.

“Yung asset remained with the government, but yung operations are in the private sector,” the transport chief explained.

“Sa Cebu, [the airport] is operated by GMR-Megawide, although yung asset talaga is an asset naman ng gobyerno, so hindi naman na-privatize yung infrastructure.” “This is also the same with the operations of Clark International Airport,” he added.

Itchie G. Cabayan
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