Mactan airport capacity seen to hit 8 million

Posted at 06/11/2014 2:58 PM | Updated as of 06/11/2014 2:58 PM

MANILA, Philippines – The capacity of Mactan Cebu International Airport (MCIA) is expected to nearly double to 8 million passengers from its current capacity of 4.5 million passengers per year, the GMR-Megawide Cebu Airport Corporation (GMCAC) said on Wednesday.

The consortium of Megawide Corp. and GMR of India, which was awarded the airport’s development and operation contract, said the increased capacity will be seen after the first phase of the modernization and construction of a second terminal.

GMCAC will take over the country’s second largest gateway in October to begin the P17.5 billion upgrade and expansion.

MCIA has been operating above its capacity, with 6.7 million passengers served in 2012 and 6.9 million passengers served in 2013.

“Our aim is to make Cebu an international hub, for in doing so, we not only further promote the island, boost local business and draw in investors, but we also become an invaluable support to the country. And not only that – we make an even more significant mark on the Asian map,” said GMCAC president Louie Ferrer.

GMCAC chief executive adviser Andrew Harrison, meanwhile, said the group aims to transform the Cebu airport into an “award-winning airport” through upgrades in counters, baggage handling systems, lounges, parking facilities as well as an adjacent airport village mall complex.

“We’d like to really try to reduce the amount of queuing you go through – whether it’s a security check, whether it’s a check-in or any other process – so that we have a defined time by which you enter the terminal and you’re at your departure lounge, or you get off the aircraft and you’re outside with your bags at the gate,” Harrison said.

“We’d like to take a look at all the arrangements for the meeters and greeters. How are the meeters and greeters’ arrangement organized? How is the taxi boarding organized? What could be more efficient? Our core expertise comes from transforming airports into award-winning airports, and we will do the same for the Cebu airport, we assure you,” he added.

Twelve private and public agencies recently committed support for the Mactan airport expansion project in a signing event attended by 150 guests at the Waterfront Hotel Mactan in Lapu-Lapu City.

The Department of Transportation and Communications officially awarded the contract to GMCAC, a consortium owned by publicly listed Filipino company Megawide Construction Corporation and India-based GMR Infrastructure Ltd., in April.