23 October 2016

Gordon eyes Subic airport inclusion in restoration funding of E-Powers Act

SEN. Richard J. Gordon is proposing inclusion in the emergency powers bill of the funding needed to repair and upgrade the runway and terminal facilities of the Subic International Airport.

Gordon is also calling for the restoration of the full operations of vital equipment, like the radar and instrument landing system (ILS), so it can be used to decongest the four Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Naia) terminals.

Per estimates derived from preliminary findings of the Senate blue-ribbon committee inquiry into the apparent failure by officials at Subic and Clark free ports to maximize what Gordon described as “prime facilities left at the former US bases,” the repairs and restoration at Subic airport will need anywhere from P600 million to P1 billion.

“We have to spend on it; otherwise, it will go to seed like Sangley,” he told the BusinessMirror, referring to the former US naval base in Cavite that was neglected for decades.

Gordon said the blue-ribbon committee was inquiring into the apparent neglect at Subic where he was the first chairman, after the US dismantled its bases when the Senate voted down the treaty extension of the RP-US Military Bases Agreement in September 1991. He thought it wiser to “fix the problem first” and then look “for who to pin the blame later.”

The immediate concern, Gordon said, is to restore what was once “one of the best airport facilities” in the world, noting the superior runway, the radar and related equipment when the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority harnessed the former US military site for civilian purposes.

He recalled that among the big-ticket investors that first located operations at Subic Airport was global logistics giant FedEx. (Butch Fernandez, Business Mirror)

Senator Richard Gordon, the first Chairman & Administrator of the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority. (photo from facebook) 

Read more: http://www.businessmirror.com.ph/gordon-eyes-subic-airport-inclusion-in-restoration-funding-of-e-powers-act