SMC consortium ready to elevate NAIA to ‘world-class standard’

February 8, 2024, 7:43 pm Updated on February 8, 2024, 8:20 pm

<p>NAIA Terminal 1 <em>(PNA file photo by Avito Dalan)</em></p>

NAIA Terminal 1 (PNA file photo by Avito Dalan)

MANILA – San Miguel Corporation (SMC) announced its readiness to take on the modernization of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) after its SMC SAP & Company Consortium's financial offer was deemed the superior among three bidders during Thursday’s proceedings at the Department of Transportation (DOTr).

Included in the SMC consortium are San Miguel Holdings Corp, RMM Asian Logistics Inc., RLW Aviation Development Inc., and Incheon International Airport Corp (IIAC), each bringing unique strengths to the project.

SMC President and CEO Ramon S. Ang emphasized that the consortium’s financial proposal prioritizes benefits to the government and the Filipino people.

“Our aim is to elevate NAIA to world-class standard, ensuring an exceptional experience for all travelers with first-rate services and facilities. Our commitment is to ensure this project brings significant value and advantages to our nation, our government, and our kababayans (fellow Filipinos),” Ang said in a news release.

He lauded the DOTr for facilitating a transparent and equitable bidding process.

Ang highlighted its strategic collaboration with IIAC, focused on developing an airport ecosystem that promotes better connectivity, high-quality service, and operational efficiency, alongside offering affordable and accessible travel options for Filipinos.

IIAC is the developer and operator of the Incheon International Airport, the largest airport in South Korea, which opened in 2001.

Incheon International Airport was ranked by air transport research firm Skytrax as the 4th best airport in the world in 2022 and the world’s first airport to be awarded the highest level of customer experience by the trade association of the world’s airports, Airports Council International.

He also pointed to the potential synergies with its ongoing development of the New Manila International Airport (NMIA) project in Bulacan. This concurrent development is expected to enhance operational efficiencies, reduce costs, and optimize flight schedules, contributing to a more connected and accessible Philippines poised for future growth.

“Our vision is to create an integrated airport network that not only improves the travel experience but also supports sustainable economic growth and elevates the Philippines as a prime hub for tourism, business, and investment in the region,” Ang said.

In a statement on Thursday, the DOTr said the SMC-SAP & Company has offered to share 82.16 percent of future gross revenues, excluding passenger service charges, with the government.

“This is in addition to the fixed upfront fee of PHP30 billion and annual fee of PHP2 billion, both payable to the government,” the DOTr said.

The other bidders were the GMR Airports Consortium which offered 33.30 percent and the Manila International Airport Consortium which offered 25.91 percent.

These three bidders were approved by the pre-qualification bids and awards committee (PBAC) for the NAIA PPP project and ranked their proposals on Thursday.

“The PBAC will review the financial proposals for compliance with the requirements of the Instructions to Bidders, which specify certain requirements for the financial model and financing plan submitted by the bidders,” it said.

A notice of award is expected to be issued to the winning bidder by Feb. 15. (with a report from Raymond Carl Dela Cruz/PNA)