4 firms to invest P6.5 B on airport road project

By Iris C. Gonzales, The Philippine Star

Posted at Jul 20 2012 07:56 AM | Updated as of Jul 20 2012 03:59 PM

MANILA, Philippines - The four companies granted licenses to build, own and operate integrated resorts at the government’s Entertainment City are pouring in up to P6.5 billion to fund an elevated road project that would link the airport to the 100-hectare Las Vegas-style casino complex.

This was disclosed by Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp. (Pagcor) chairman and chief executive officer Cristino Naguiat Jr.

In an interview with The STAR, Naguiat said the amount would be split among the four investor-groups but to be coursed through Pagcor as the proponent of the Entertainment City.

“Best chance is by next week, we (Pagcor) and the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) will sign an agreement for the (road project),” Naguiat said.

DPWH is the proponent of the P15.86-billion Ninoy Aquino International Airport Expressway Project, which is among the government’s infrastructure projects lined up under its Public-Private Partnership (PPP) program.

Naguiat said that under the agreement to be signed with the DPWH, Pagcor, through the four licensees of Entertainment City, would bankroll part of the cost of building the road.

The toll operator would then pay Pagcor after 10 years.

“It will be a soft loan to be paid after 10 years with almost no interest,” Naguiat said.

The four licensees are Andrew Tan’s Alliance Global, Enrique Razon’s Bloomberry Resorts, Japanese tycoon Kazuo Okada and taipan Henry Sy’s Belle Corp.

According to data from the DPWH, the NAIA Expressway project involves the maintenance and improvement of the existing NAIA Expressway Phase I road and the construction of Phase 2 of the NAIA Expressway, which is expected to decongest traffic between the different airport terminals.

“The alignment for Phase 2 involves the construction of a 4.83-kilometer road from the NAIA Expressway Phase 1 following the existing road alignment over Sales Avenue, Andrews Avenue, Domestic Road and NAIA Road, and ends with entry andexit ramps at the Roxas Boulevard and Manila Cavite Toll Expressway, the Diosdado Macapagal Boulevard and Pagcor’s Entertainment City,” the government’s PPP Center said in a separate statement.

The total length of the NAIA Express way is 9.37 kilometers and is expected to ease traffic going to and from the Manila International Airport at the NAIA complex.

Furthermore, it will also provide direct links to passenger terminals 1 and 2, including the International Cargo Terminal.