40 airports get P10B for modernization

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FORTY airports in the in the country are getting P10.1 billion in modernization funding, Makati City Second District Rep. Luis Campos Jr. said over the weekend.

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“Clark is getting P2.74 billion to enable it to cope with more flights,” Campos said in a statement, noting that Clark International Airport has the biggest share of capital outlay under the Aviation Infrastructure Program of the proposed P3.767-trillion General Appropriations Act for 2018.

“The target is to have Clark’s two 3,200-meter long runways operating at night, and eventually extend both runways, possibly to 5,000 meters, to accommodate bigger aircraft,” Campos said.

The Department of Transportation (DOTr) earlier said it aims to give 40 Philippine airports night ratings before the end of President Rodrigo Duterte’s term in 2022.

Only the primary airstrip at Clark is capable of handling day-and-night operations. The secondary airstrip lacks navigational aids and lighting facilities to service evening flights.

Campos said 13 smaller airports would get a combined P262.61 million, or an average of P20.20 million each, for infrastructure upgrades.

The Department of Tourism expects foreign and domestic tourism to grow more in the coming years, with the DOTr expecting a higher number of flights as it implements airport modernization projects.

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) earlier said increased passenger traffic exposes deficiencies in airport infrastructure.

“In every part of the world, airport and air navigation infrastructure is struggling to cope with demand. There are plenty of examples linking connectivity and economic prosperity,” the IATA earlier said.

It advised airports to undergo upgrades to accommodate more passenger traffic.

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