Solon lauds grant of Bulacan airport franchise

A party-list lawmaker on Thursday lauded the enactment of a law granting San Miguel Aerocity Inc. a 50-year franchise to construct domestic and international airports in the Municipality of Bulakan, Bulacan.

AAMBIS-OWA Rep. Sharon Garin said the New Manila International Airport (NMIA) to be established would decongest Ninoy International Airport (NAIA) and elevate both the passenger experience, while maximizing the country’s revenue potential.

“Our country relies heavily on tourism and we want to support the industry by providing better facilities that will be ready to accommodate the expected influx of foreign tourists once this pandemic is over,” she said.

Citing the 2019 report of the International Air Transport Association (IATA), Garin highlighted the substantial contribution of the air transport industry to the Philippines, including airlines and its supply chain, with a contribution of roughly PHP131 billion to the country’s gross domestic product (GDP).

On top of this, around 1.2 million jobs are supported by the air transport sector.

Garin noted that another proposal is underway, or the proposed Bulacan Airport City Special Economic Zone and Freeport Act (House Bill 7575), to complement the newly-enacted law and propel the country’s economic recovery and growth.

Garin, who is a principal sponsor of the measure, said the Bulacan Ecozone shall be equipped with transportation, telecommunications, and other facilities needed to attract legitimate and productive investments, generate linkage industries, and employment opportunities for the people of Bulacan.

She expressed optimism that the complementary measure will also be enacted into law before the start of the third regular session.

She said the franchise and proposed ecozone can serve as “gateways” to stable economic recovery.

The bill granting San Miguel Aerocity Inc. a 50-year franchise lapsed into law, registered as Republic Act No. 11506, on Dec. 20, 2020.

The franchise measure was passed by the House of Representatives last September and amended by the Senate in October.

Source: Philippines News agency

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