It makes sense that the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) has revised the criteria for the bidding of the P17.5 billion Mactan-Cebu international airport passenger terminal project to provide the government with more competitive proposals and encourage broader participation from the private sector.
To protect against a potential conflict-of-interest during the operation stage, the DOTC and Mactan-Cebu International Airport Authority (MCIAA) will instead include strict competition safeguards in the concession agreement and will be vigilant in its implementation.
DOTC Sec. Joseph Abaya said that after careful evaluation and deliberation on the best policy to adopt for the new Mactan-Cebu International Airport Terminal project that would both maintain a level playing field and allow the infusion of expertise and experience into the operation of the new terminal, the DOTC has modified the bid criteraia for the project.
The revision of the criteria is also DOTC’s response to appeals from both local and foreign companies interested in taking part in the bidding process.
The revised criteria would allow airline companies, their subsidiaries, affiliates, and their parent companies to have a limited stake in the entities that will qualify to bid for the project.
However, the criteria retain the rule which prevents airline companies and airline-related entities from having a direct interest in the facility operator – an entity which will actually operate the airport – except in the case of an airline-related entity which itself satisfies the minimum operations and maintenance experience requirement of the bidder.
Airline companies and entities having any relationship with an airline company may own up to a maximum of 33% of the shares in the winning bidder’s special purpose company (SPC) which will be given the concession, as long as no airline company is directly involved in operations.
The project involves the construction of a new world-class international passenger terminal building in MCIA, with a capacity of about 8 million passengers per year; renovation and expansion of the existing terminal; installation of all the required equipment; and the operation of both new and existing facilities.
When the new international terminal building is completed, the existing terminal, which currently caters to both domestic and international passengers, will be converted into an exclusively-domestic passenger terminal.