August 22, 2022

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Consortium to sign contract for Sangley airport in Sept.

By Arjay L. Balinbin, Senior Reporter

A CONSORTIUM composed of Philippine, European and South Korean companies is set to be awarded the contract to develop the Sangley Point International Airport (SPIA) in September, according to the Cavite provincial government.

Cavite Governor Juanito Victor “Jonvic” C. Remulla, Jr. confirmed to BusinessWorld on Monday that no groups participated in the “competitive challenge” or Swiss challenge process for the SPIA project.

The SPIA Development Consortium had submitted an unsolicited proposal to develop the Sangley airport.

It is composed of the Virata-led Cavitex Holdings; Yuchengo-led House of Investments, Inc.; MacroAsia Corp., an aviation support services provider controlled by the family of billionaire Lucio C. Tan; Samsung C&T Corp., a South Korean construction and engineering company; Munich Airport International, a wholly owned subsidiary of Flughafen München GmbH; and Arup, a UK-based design company.

Cavite’s Public-Private Partnership (PPP) Selection Committee Chairman Renato A. Abutan informed Cavitex Holdings in an Aug. 18 letter that the province intends to award the contract to the SPIA Development Consortium on Sept. 14. The date is still tentatively scheduled.

Mr. Remulla sent a copy of the letter to BusinessWorld on Monday.

All unsolicited proposals are required to undergo a Swiss challenge, wherein other groups may submit counterbids.

As demand for air travel is expected to increase in the next 30 to 40 years, the province of Cavite has been pushing for the development of the SPIA as an alternative to the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Pasay City, the Philippines’ primary gateway.

MacroAsia President and Chief Operating Officer Eduardo Luis T. Luy told reporters on Friday that there were no bids submitted during the Swiss challenge, saying this is a “good sign.”

“We (MacroAsia) are mostly going to be on the O&M (operations and maintenance) side, because previously we were supposed to be part of this project in a different way. Now that goal has kind of shifted, we will be participating more on the operations side of things,” he said on the sidelines of the formal opening of Lufthansa Technik Philippines, Inc.’s new hangar in Pasay City.

To recall, MacroAsia and its partner China Communications Construction Co. Ltd. had negotiated with Cavite for the project in 2020, but the province canceled its notice of selection and award in January 2021 due to the “various deficiencies in the submission of requirements to conclude the joint-venture agreement.”

Cavite City’s Sangley Point, located along a peninsula that juts out to Manila Bay, is currently operated by the National Government as a supplemental runway to NAIA. The airstrip was first built in 1951 by the US Navy.