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Tandem between two Japanese giants signs contract to build New Bohol Airport

A joint venture between two Japanese firms is set to build a new airport in Bohol that will be 10 times bigger than the old facility.

Chiyoda Corp. and Mitsubishi Corp. formally signed yesterday a P7-billion government contract to build the New Bohol Airport.

In a statement, Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) Secretary Joseph Emilio A. Abaya said: “Construction will start in June. We appreciate if the airport can be done in one and a half years.”

He said the facility should be completed by 2017 at the earliest.

 Chiyoda Associate Director Tadayoshi Kimura disclosed in an interview that they had already started some preparatory work at the site so they could immediately respond to the notice of award and notice to proceed that would be issued soon.

The airport will have a floor area of around 8,800 square meters, replacing the 850-square-meter Tagbilaran Airport.

Mr. Abaya said the old airport can be converted for commercial use or to accommodate locators from the information technology and business process outsourcing industries to spur tourism in Bohol.

“Tourists in Bohol continue to grow each year that passes. Unfortunately, the current airport may not be able to accommodate the increase over time,” said Mr. Abaya.

“This gives us the need to cater to the increasing number of tourists and this means modernizing and expanding the airport with a design that is of international standards,” he added.

The first greenfield airport under the Aquino administration, which has environment-friendly and energy-saving features, is financed by official development assistance (ODA) loan from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).

According to JICA Chief Representative Niwa Noriaki, implementation of a project of such big magnitude is not an easy task and may test the harmony between contracting parties.

“JICA trusts that both the DOTC and Chiyoda Mitsubishi joint venture can rise up to such challenges and work together in a mutually acceptable way for the overall good of the project,” he said.



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