House approves on 2nd reading San Miguel’s franchise for Bulacan airport

RG Cruz, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 01 2020 09:50 PM

Exterior design studies for SMC's proposed New Manila International Airport project in Bulakan, Bulacan. Photo courtesy of San Miguel Corp.  

MANILA - The House of Representatives has approved on 2nd reading the grant of a congressional franchise to the San Miguel Corporation for the Bulacan Airport.

HB 7507, grants San Miguel Aerocity, Inc. a franchise to establish a domestic and international airport in the Municipality of Bulakan, and develop an adjacent airport city.

The approval came in an ayes and nays vote where the affirmative votes outshouted the adverse votes.

To be dubbed the “New Manila International Airport,” the new airport will be built in the coastal areas of Bulakan, Bulacan, around 30 kilometers north of Metro Manila. The plan is expected to decongest the Ninoy Aquino International Airport and support growth and development in Central Luzon.

The plenary approved the bill after it hurdled the House Ways and Means Committee and the Committee on Legislative Franchises. Committee reports with significant tax implications are automatically referred to the Ways and Means Committee for its discussion and approval.

The Private Public Partnership (PPP) Center has assured the committee that the government will not have financial obligations to SMC.

Last week, House Ways and Means chair Albay Rep. Joey Salceda said some tax provisions of the franchise bill should be revised to make it “fairer.”

HB 7507 was sponsored by Bulacan Rep. Jose Antonio Sy Alvarado. There were interpellations from Representatives Carlos Zarate, France Castro, Arlene Brosas and Bienvenido Abante. There was also a manifestation from Bayan Muna Rep. Eufemia Cullamat.

The proposed airport will have 4 runways, expandable up to 6, with a capacity of 100 million passengers every year, San Miguel earlier said.