Conglomerate Aboitiz Equity Ventures Inc. submitted an unsolicited offer to develop and operate Laguindingan Airport, which is located in Misamis Oriental and is considered a gateway to Northern Mindanao.
This was disclosed last week by Manuel Tamayo, undersecretary for aviation at the Department of Transportation (DOTr) .
Tamayo said the unsolicited proposal was submitted to the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines. He could not immediately provide details on the offer.
Laguindingan Airport, now considered the country’s sixth-busiest air gateway, was opened in 2013. It has a 2,100-meter runway and serves close to two million passengers annually.
The airport serves Cagayan de Oro City and nearby areas such as Iligan City, Marawi City and Bukidnon province.
This is the second provincial airport that AEV, through Aboitiz InfraCapital, has expressed interest in operating.
The company earlier won original proponent status to operate and further develop the Bohol Panglao International Airport, which was inaugurated last month.
The Cebu-based Aboitiz Group has interests that span power, banking, property development and agribusiness. It is also part of a consortium of seven conglomerates seeking to modernize and operate Manila’s Ninoy Aquino International Airport.
Among the groups that were prequalified to join the Aquino administration’s tender for regional airports, a Public-Private Partnership project, AEV shifted gears after the Duterte administration scrapped the PPP.
In May 2017, the DOTr announced its preference for government funding or foreign loans to finance the development of provincial airports. That policy direction changed anew as unsolicited offers were made.
Last October, it awarded original proponent status to businessman Dennis Uy’s Chelsea Logistics Holdings Corp., which made a P49-billion unsolicited offer for the Davao International Airport, the country’s third busiest gateway.
It also conferred an original proponent status to Mega 7 Construction Corp. for its P3.8-billion proposal for Kalibo International Airport, a gateway to Boracay Island, a popular destination for tourists.