Diversified conglomerate San Miguel Corp. (SMC) has agreed to cooperate with Metro Pacific Investment Corp. (MPIC) Chairman Manuel Pangilinan on the proposed Manila Bay international airport.
“We have chosen MVP [Manuel V. Pangilinan] as our partner. We are constantly speaking, and our talks were lengthy. We agreed to negotiate for a possible partnership with him, but percentage-wise, we have not agreed on it yet, but I think we are willing to cooperate,” Ramon Ang, SMC president and chief operating officer said after the company’s annual stockholders’ meeting.
SMC is capable of building the new international airport facility on its own, but it decided to cooperate with the MPIC chairman.
“If we join forces then I believe it would be much better for the country,” Ang said. “Our talks are already in its advance stage,” he added.
The proposed airport is estimated to cost $10 billion.
Ang clarified the cooperation with Pangilinan pertains to the first stage of the construction phase, which would entail a $2 billion investment.
“We are continuously looking at other areas of cooperation. But with respect to the airport project, which consists of many stages such as runways, terminals, roads and even commercial spaces… we would first focus on the initial stage insofar as the cooperation with MVP is concerned,” he said.
“Thus, subsequent expansions could later be the subject of a separate cooperation agreement with MVP,” Ang added.
Talks are also happening Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala, chairman and chief executive officer of Ayala Corp., for other possible cooperation agreement involving various infrastructure projects.
“We are keen on building the airport as the first stage would have an initial two runways which would be two-kilometer long, respectively, as well as terminals,” Ang said.
Later on, Ang said the runways may be expanded by another two, and a terminal that could accommodate by up to 50 million passengers per year compared with the Ninoy Aquino International Airport’s 30 million which is beyond its operating capacity.
The proposed airport would sit on a 1,600-hectare of mainly reclaimed land in Manila Bay and was proposed two years ago to the outgoing Aquino administration.
“It will take about five years to complete the entire proposed airport,” Ang said.
Ang said SMC would wait for the guidelines of the incoming administration on unsolicited bids such as the proposed airport.