Bidding for Clark airport O&M a landmark accomplishment for PH gov’t

The success of the bidding for the Clark International Airport operations and maintenance (O&M) contract shows the seriousness of the Duterte administration to “Build, Build, Build.”

The Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) in partnership with the Department of Transportation (DOTr) recently awarded the O&M contract to the four-member North Luzon Airport Consortium (NLAC), which includes Changi Airport Group, the operator of the number one airport in the world, Singapore Changi Airport.

The successful selection process proves that government is committed to providing our citizens with world-class, efficient and comfortable infrastructure, as envisioned under the President’s Build Build Build program.

The Clark airport expansion project was done in record time, within the first two years of President Duterte’s term—a major accomplishment considering that development plans for the airport were neglected for years. 

The BCDA Special Bids and Awards Committee for the O&M contract conducted a stringent and very transparent bidding process, which was guided by the International Finance Corporation of the World Bank (IFC-WB) as its transaction adviser, and the Public-Private Partnership Center (PPPC).

In a year-end press conference held by the PPP Center last December 20, Executive Director Ferdinand Pecson said that the bidding process for the Clark airport O&M contract was aboveboard and no group was favorably chosen over another.

The Clark International Airport is the first project being implemented using the hybrid PPP mode to fast-track infrastructure development under the Build Build Build program.

The concession agreement for the O&M contract has also been cleared by the Office of the Government Corporate Counsel and the Department of Finance (DOF), and is seen to protect not only the interest of the present government, but also future governments from undue and contingent risks and liabilities. 

Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez said in an earlier statement that DOF had meticulously scrutinized the concession agreements for the Clark airport to ensure the government would not incur unwarranted contingent liabilities, like what happened to the Mactan-Cebu airport contract.

“If you compare the guarantees that were given to the Cebu contract comparing to what we have for the Clark and the Bulacan, you will see the big difference from before,” Dominguez said. “We’re going to get those, the contract in Clark, and the contract for the Bulacan airport with no government liability at all,” he added.

Meanwhile, citing the key features of the Bulacan airport concession agreement, Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia added that these projects “certainly raise the bar on PPP projects.”

NLAC’s financial bid offer of 18.25% annual gross revenue percentage share is almost twice the minimum rate set at 10% as approved by the NEDA Board. The bid offer, according to the PPPC, is more than 80 percent better than the minimum rate set.

The other three members of NLAC are Filinvest Development Corporation, JG Summit Holdings, Inc. and Philippine Airport Ground Support Solutions, Inc. Each consortium member has a vast experience in property development, air transportation and airport operations, especially Changi Airports Philippines Pte. Ltd., which is 100%-owned by Changi Airports International Pte. Ltd.

Singapore Changi Airport was ranked first in Skytrax’s top 100 airports for 2018, and was voted as one of the best airports in the world for six consecutive years. (BCDA).

Source: Philippines Information Agency

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