Print
25
Sep

Mactan airport operator aims to double number of airlines

Share

By Arra B. Francia | BusinessWorld Online

DIVERSIFIED engineering conglomerate Megawide Construction Corp. expects to double the number of airlines flying in and out of the Mactan-Cebu International Airport (MCIA) in a span of less than three years, as it concludes construction for the airport’s second terminal in June 2018.

“We have 22 now. Easily in the next two years, we expect another 15 to 20 airlines, flights to come in. We can double easily in less than three years,” Megawide President and Chief Operating Officer Edgar B. Saavedra told BusinessWorld at the sidelines of the company’s annual shareholders’ meeting in Ortigas last week.

He noted MCIA only had seven airlines when they took over operations alongside foreign partner GMR Infrastructure Ltd. in 2014. The Megawide-GMR joint venture company won the contract for the P17.52-billion MCIA Passenger Terminal Building project under the Aquino administration’s flagship public-private partnership (PPP) program and the concession to develop MCIA for a period of 25 years.

Mr. Saavedra said they are in talks with several Chinese airlines, which are interested in adding routes between China and Cebu amid strong interest from Chinese tourists.

“Mostly right now the routes in China, we are talking around four to five Chinese airlines. In MCIA, there are already direct flights from Cebu to Beijing and second-tier cities like Chengdu, Xiamen. And it can expand more, because the Chinese are very aggressive right now especially when the (Philippine) government approved the no-visa policy. We expect a huge influx of Chinese tourists,” Mr. Saavedra explained.

In August, the Department of Justice issued a circular allowing Chinese citizens the visa-upon-arrival option in an effort to attract more tourists and investors from China. The government looks to double the number of Chinese tourists in the country in the coming years, which stood at over 675,000 in 2016.

In May 2017, Chinese arrivals were recorded at 73,649, 57.29% higher than year-on-year figures. This is also the third highest figure for international tourist arrivals after Korea and the United States.

Mr. Saavedra said Megawide is bullish on the airport sector as it provides higher margins. In 2016, the company’s airport segment contributed around 40% to its bottom line, despite only contributing around 10% to 15% in revenues. The company delivered a net income of P1.92 billion in 2016, while revenues stood at P17.92 billion.

“Moving forward in the airport, we’re always bullish. In fact, the five airports which the government just unbundled and postponed, we are very bullish. So now since they rolled out the first project of this administration, the Clark airport, we will be joining the construction… the EPC (engineering, procurement and construction) and O&M (Operations and management). The bidding for EPC is ongoing and we are joining right now,” Mr. Saavedra said.

The P12.55-billion Clark International Airport passenger terminal is targeted to accommodate eight million passengers annually. The government looks to start its construction by December this year and complete the facilities by December 2020.

The government is expected to award the EPC contract to the winning bidder by November, while bidding for O&M will start a month after and will be awarded by the first quarter of 2018.

Megawide posted a 5.88% decline in attributable profit for the first semester of 2017 to P927 million, as revenues likewise slowed by 5.39% to P9.64 billion.

CAB Hotline

Public Assistance 24/7

165-66

Secondary Numbers

NAIA Terminal1 0919-9128457 Laguindingan 0919-9128468
NAIA Terminal2 0919-9128458 Laoag Airport 0998-5864834
NAIA Terminal3 0919-9128451 Legaspi Airport 0919-9128461
NAIA Terminal4 0919-9128470 Mactan-Cebu Int'l. 0919-9128464
Clark Int'l .Airport 0919-9128471 Naga Airport 0919-9128462
Boracay Airport 0919-9128453 Ozamis Airport 0998-5864835
Bacolod Airport 0998-5864828 Pagadian Airport 0998-5864836
Basco Airport 0998-5864829 Puerto Princessa 0998-5864837
Busuanga Airport 0919-9128460 Roxas Airport 0998-5864838
Butuan Airport 0998-5864830 Siargao Airport 0919-9128456
Davao Int'l. Airport 0919-9128469 Surigao Airport 0998-5864839
Dipolog Airport 0998-5864832 Tacloban Airport 0998-5864840
Dumaguete Airprot 0998-5864833 Tagbiliran Airport 0919-9128465
General Santos 0919-9128467 Tugeugarao Airport 0998-5864841
Iloilo Int'l .Airport 0919-9128466 Virac Airport 0919-9128463
Kalibo Int'l. Airport 0919-9128454 Zamboanga Airport 0998-5864842

✆ 852-8967 (CAB Legal and Enforcement Division)
APBR@cab.gov.ph

Trunk Lines:
☎ (+632) 853-7259
☎ (+632) 854-5996