MANILA - Transport Secretary Arthur Tugade on Friday said he estimates that the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) has a remaining lifespan of 10 years due to congestion and new advancements in aviation technology.
"NAIA will not last forever because it is presently situated in a place which is overly congested, and technology and airline travel have improved," he said. "My fear, it would be 8 to 9 years, at most, 10 years. That’s the lifespan of NAIA," he added.
Transforming NAIA into an economic development zone is the government's vision, in addition to improving other airports and entertaining proposals for new airport developments, Tugade said during the Philippine Economic Briefing held in Pampanga.
"If you have Sangley and Bulacan, then we are ready for additional developments," he said.
"I will entertain them [proposals]. First come, first serve, because if you develop runways in Bulacan and Sangley, you will have added capacity of runways," he explained.
San Miguel Corp's P700 billion unsolicited proposal to build and operate an airport in Bulacan is already up for the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Board's approval.
The goal is to get all 42 commercially operational airports in the country "night-rated" before the end of the Duterte administration, Tugade said.
Night-ratings allow airports to accommodate flights after sunset.