DoTr sticks to submission deadline for NAIA upgrade bidders

DoTr sticks to submission deadline for NAIA upgrade bidders

THE Department of Transportation (DoTr) will not extend the bid submission deadline for the rehabilitation of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA), the agency’s head said, citing the urgency to upgrade the country’s main gateway.

“The bid [submission] deadline is initially set on Dec. 27 and we want to stick to that deadline because we want to implement the program as soon as possible,” Transportation Secretary Jaime J. Bautista told reporters on the sidelines of a forum on Monday.

This comes after the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the project’s transaction advisor, has recommended extending the bid submission deadline for the rehabilitation of the NAIA until January next year.

“For now, we are requesting all the bidders to submit their bids [and] proposals by Dec. 27,” Mr. Bautista said.

In November, the ADB said its proposal to extend was meant to give potential bidders more time to prepare and submit their bids, which it said would result in “more competition and a better financial outcome for the Philippine government.”

The bank said the extension would also encourage new players and foreign investments as it warned that only two prospective bidders would be able to submit bids if the deadline is retained.

“There are actually four who requested the extension but I understand that they will still submit the bids by the deadline,” Mr. Bautista said, declining to name the requesting entities.

To date, the number of prospective bidders for the NAIA rehabilitation remained at eight, Mr. Bautista said.

The DoTr previously identified the eight potential bidders as the Turkey-based Limak Group; Incheon International Airport Corp.; San Miguel Holdings Corp.; Manila International Airport Consortium; Cengiz Insaat Sanayi ve Ticaret A.S.; GMR Airports International; Spark 888 Management; and Asia Airport Consortium.

The DoTr is expecting to announce the winning bidder by the first quarter of next year.

NAIA’s rehabilitation aims to decongest the airport by helping improve its annual passenger capacity to 62 million from the current 35 million.

The winning bidder for the airport upgrade is required to pay an upfront amount of about P30 billion and an annual payment of P2 billion, plus a share of revenue, the draft concession agreement said.

According to the NAIA-Public-Private Partnership concession agreement, the contract term for the project is 15 years, extendable by another 10 years. The project will be a rehabilitate-operate-expand-transfer arrangement, as provided for under the Build-Operate-and-Transfer Law. — Ashley Erika O. Jose