Gokongwei group to appeal DOTC’s Mactan-Cebu airport decision
MANILA, Philippines – The Gokongwei group will appeal the decision of the Department of Transport and Communications (DOTC) to ban companies with interests in the aviation industry from bidding for the Mactan-Cebu International Airport PPP expansion project.
“The JG Summit Holdings remains very interested in the project and we will certainly seek reconsideration of the initial ruling,” the holding firm's president CEO, Lance Gokongwei told reporters on Thursday, January 17.
“In an issue like this, it’s better not to air our grievances. It’s better to be informal about it. We’ll send a formal pleading and paper to the officials of DOTC,” he added at the launch the long-haul flights of Cebu Pacific, the budget airline unit of JG Summit.
In the project’s prequalification terms of reference, DOTC announced that all groups with minority or controlling interests in airline companies were banned from bidding for the country’s second largest airport, citing conflict of interest as the main concern.
No airlines allowed
Gokongwei was reacting to the recently announced decision of the DOTC to exclude certain business groups in the bid for the right to build and operate the country's second busiest airport.
"We want to dwell on the conservative side to eliminate all forms of conflict of interest,” DOTC Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya had told reporters.
This automatically ruled out JG Summit Holdings, which owns budget carrier Cebu Pacific, and San Miguel Corp, which operates legacy carrier Philippine Airlines (PAL) and Caticlan airport, and narrowed the bidding field down to the consortium of Ayala Corp. and the Cebu-based Aboitiz Equity Ventures, and the Pangilinan-led Metro Pacific Investments Corp.
Abaya announced at the beginning of January that it was standing firm on DOTC’s decision. However, Gokongwei believes that they have the necessary skills needed for the project.
“We believe we have the necessary project management and operating skills to run a competent and well run airline for the benefit of all stake holders whether it be airline, passengers or government,” said Gokongwei.
According to Gokongwei, they “received the ruling at the same time as everybody else. - Rappler.com