MANILA, Philippines - US casino giant Caesars Palace wants to build a $1.5-billion integrated entertainment center on a 30-hectare idle government property next to Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 2.
And because of the project's proximity to NAIA, Caesars is offering to help redesign the country's main gateway.
In a statement, Caesars president for international development Steven Tight said the company is bringing in foreign experts to advise on the redesign of the NAIA and on a light railway transit to connect NAIA terminals 1 and 2.
With Caesars expecting to bring in as many as 3.5 million visitors to its proposed casino-resort, Tight said the foreign experts have also proposed ways to increase the number of flights on NAIA's existing runways.
He said this can be achieved by building a new control tower at NAIA with technologically advanced equipment that can guide aircraft 150 miles away, instead of the present 50 miles to allow more take-offs and landings.
Tight said the experts also proposed additional high-speed exits for aircraft to immediately clear the runway after landing to give way to the next aircraft that will either land or take off.
Caesars Palace said its proposed casino-resort would initially create 20,000 jobs and make the Philippines a major tourist destination.
Tight also made a pitch for Caesars' entry into the Philippines. He cited the example of Macau, which became a gaming hub with the entry of global brands in 2004. Now Macau has more than 40 casinos, with revenues six times as much as Las Vegas.
"Macau blossomed into a behemoth because it allowed all the major global players to operate there. Each operator spent huge sums to market Macau. It will be the same with the Philippines, which actually has more to offer and should be a better destination," the Caesars official said.