MANILA, Philippines - The government is set to rehabilitate and improve 8 airports in the provinces.
The Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) identified the airports as San Vicente, Palawan; Pagadian City in Zamboanga del Sur; Butuan City in Agusan del Norte; Dipolog City in Zamboanga del Norte; Sanga-Sanga in Bongao, Tawi-Tawi; Cotabato City in North Cotabato; and Maasin in Southern Leyte.
The total cost of the airports' rehabilitation is estimated at P327.4 million.
"The government is committed to improve the airports in these areas where trade and tourism have been in an upswing for the past year. And the government will not stop in implementing these programmed infrastructure projects, through a transparent public bidding, to improve the lives and welfare of the people in the rural areas," Transportation Secretary Mar Roxas said.
The projects are expected to boost the local economy.
"These projects will have a multiplier effect as more commercial establishments, factories and industrial plants are expected to be built in these areas, hence the creation of more jobs for rural folks. It will also result in more consumer spending where these projects are located," he added.
The DOTC is allocating P63.9 million for the Sanga-Sanga airport, Bongao, Tawi-Tawi for the construction of a terminal building and drainage system and expansion of its apron.
The P62.7-million San Vicente Airport development project in Palawan involves constructing a passenger terminal, fire station, water tank and runway extension.
The P58.1-million Cotabato airport project involves widening its taxiway and runway to support the program making North Cotobato as a strategic link to the arterial road system. The road system will connect Davao City - SOCCSKSARGEN - Cotabato Corridor.
In Dipolog, the P55.2 million will be allocated for the completion of the passenger terminal building.
The P45.5 million Butuan City airport project will include expanding the apron and parking area, and construction of a drainage system and a concrete fence.
The Pagadian Airport project, which costs P42 million, involves a runway extension, taxiway widening, improvement of the passenger terminal and expansion of parking area.
The airport in Maasin, Leyte will also be improved to allow it to handle commercial flights.