June 16, 2010
Manila - Cathay Pacific announced Tuesday that it is not moving to Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 3 at least for the month of June following delays in planning permissions to construct its own business lounges at Manila airports' newest Terminal.
The Philippines largest foreign carrier by passenger traffic, said that there June transfer is deferred for another month because the construction of its own lounge is still in progress.
Two other foreign airlines which planned to transfer at Terminal 3 by June also suffered the same fate as regulatory delays put a brake on their time frame as they also require construction of exclusive lounges which are still under construction and cannot be finished by June 30.
Atty. Melvin Matibag, General Manager of Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) said they would try to convince the other two airlines to moved to Terminal 3 by June 30 even without the exclusive lounges in a bid to credit accomplishment to administration of outgoing President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.
“They can actually move to Terminal 3. The facilities at the terminal like baggage handling, passenger check-in, and air bridges are all ready,” said Matibag.
“Cathay insists that they wants to build a lounge first before they move. That’s going to take some time,” he said.
“It doesn’t look like they can move by the end of the month. But were hoping to persuade the other two to relocate by June 30 hopefully” Matibag adds.
The airport manager declined to name the other two airlines except that one is a regional airline from Asia Pacific and the other from the Middle East. A lounge however is being built at terminal 3 with Singapore Airlines as its tenant.
MIAA will meet with the relocating airlines this week about the progress of the construction work as well as talk with other international airlines to consider using Terminal 3.
Terminal 3 has a design capacity of 13 million passengers and currently handles more than 7 million passengers in 2009. It is occupied by low cost carriers Cebu Pacific and Air Philippines Express.