CLARK, Pampanga-- The Clark International Airport Corporation (CIAC) is set to hold talks with more airlines to connect the premier airport north of Manila to the North American region, according to CIAC president and CEO Alexander Cauguiran.
"Yes, we are currently in negotiations with air carriers, pertaining especially in connecting Clark to North America," Cauguiran said.
The CIAC chief, however, declined to name the air carriers as airport management is currently in talks with them.
He said the huge market potential of Clark International Airport (CRK) are travelers coming from regions 1 to 3, and the Camanava area (Caloocan, Malabon, Navotas, Malabon) with a combined population of around 24.2 million.
"Clark ought to be the most logical and practical airport of choice of the people from the northern and central parts of Luzon," Cauguiran said, citing the ordeal of travelers who experienced the horrendous traffic congestion on their way to the over-crowded Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).
Likewise, he said the CIAC's master development plan includes the building of a new passenger terminal with an eight million-passenger capacity.
He said the Duterte administration plans to build another terminal by 2019 or before President Rodrigo Duterte's term ends.
Cauguiran also said studies indicate the inevitable growth in the number of passengers due to the increase in flights at CRK.
In its report, CIAC seeks to maximize in the next two to three years the existing terminal with a capacity of 4.2 million passengers annually.
"Plans of maximizing CRK are aligned with Secretary Tugade's efforts to ease the congestion at the NAIA and Metro Manila," the CIAC executive added.
Clark has already accommodated the international and domestic flights of Philippine Airlines, including daily flights to Caticlan, Cebu, Davao, and daily international flights to Incheon in South Korea, along with AirAsia's thrice weekly Clark-Kalibo flight set to begin late next month.
The flag-carrier is also set to launch its Palawan route via Puerto Princesa and Busuanga on March 26. (PNA)
Source: Philippines information agency