The Philippine government has extended the bidding deadlines for Mactan-Cebu International Airport’s new terminal to April 5 after claiming to have been “overwhelmed” by more than a thousand queries for it and two other private public partnership projects.
The deadline for investors submitting pre-qualification documents in Mactan-Cebu’s $240 million terminal project had initially been set at March 22 as the government looked to push through the deal this year.
“Ensuring that the government receives the most advantageous deals with long-term stability is our priority,” the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) said in a statement.
In addition to a new 3.5mppa capacity international terminal at Mactan-Cebu, the government wants the successful bidder to invest a further $185 million on expanding the domestic terminal to 41,000sqm.
Vinci Airports is widely tipped to be one of the potential bidders for Mactan-Cebu in the PPP project, which is being facilitated by the government-owned Public-Private Partnership Center.
Executive director of the Public-Private Partnership Center, Cosette Canilao, told Airport World: “We need to update existing terminals and build news ones and new airports to meet future demand and believe that PPP projects are the best way to develop them.
“We are aware that mistakes were made before with the T3 concession at Ninoy Aquino, which without doubt, damaged the reputation of the Philippines for international investors. However, we have learnt from the experience, which is why we have set up the Public-Private Partnership Center to assist in the preparation of projects.
"This includes negotiating the terms of the concessions with the government and overseeing the bidding process.
“We now have a clear strategy. We know what the government wants and obligations it expects from the private sector. We are also developing clear exit strategies so that the mistakes of the past cannot be repeated.”
Canilao insists that number of companies queuing up for Mactan-Cebu and showing interest in its other airports shows that it has got it right this time.
Next on the agenda are PPP projects to expand Puerto Princesa ($110 million) and for the new airports in Bicol ($120m), Languindingan ($200m) and Bohol ($175 million) on Panglao Island.
Bohol, which will replace the existing Tagbilaran Airport on, will boast an 850sqm terminal, which will be capable of handling up to 1.7mppa and aircraft up to the size of the A320.
The Philippines has 87 airports including 12 international gateways that include Manila-Ninoy Aquino, Subic Bay and Clark.
Mactan-Cebu is the second busiest airport in the Philippines after Manila-Ninoy Aquino, with the bulk of its 6.2 millin passengers primarily accommodated on regional international and domestic flights.