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Privatization plans for NAIA welcomed by BI

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Bureau of Immigration (BI) chief Norman Tansingco said a recent proposal by the government’s transportation officials to modernize the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) is a welcome move, as it will facilitate the delivery of faster and efficient immigration services to the traveling public.

Tansingco said the BI fully supports a joint proposal recently submitted by the Department of Transportation (DOTr) and Manila International Airport Authority to the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) to undertake the NAIA modernization project.

Said proposal seeks to upgrade the facilities of the country’s premiere airport through a public-private partnership scheme that will be undertaken by a private concessionaire who will invest in the project.

“As we have repeatedly stressed, the expansion of NAIA’s facilities is necessary so we can avoid these long queues in our immigration counters and expedite the processing of the thousands of international passengers who arrive and depart at the airport daily,” Tansingco said.

The BI chief added he hopes that with a modernized NAIA, the immigration areas in NAIA’s terminals will be widened and additional immigration booths will be installed ‘to enable us to cope with the ever increasing volume of passengers at the airport.’

Tansingco stressed that lack of manpower is no longer a problem for the BI with the continuous hiring of new BI officers in recent years.

“What we need at the NAIA is additional space and more immigration counters so that these long passeger queues will become a thing of the past,” he added.

He said the proposed NAIA modernization project could not have come at a more opportune time, citing the recent approval by the House of Representatives of a new Philippine immigration law that will replace the antiquated 1940 immigration act.

Itchie G. Cabayan
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