Friday, 11 April 2008

Gov’t looking for new NAIA-3 contractor, says Takenaka definitely out


JAPANESE FIRM Takenaka Corp. is definitely out of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport-Terminal 3 (NAIA-3) picture, with the government aiming to bid out within the month the contract to finish the long-mothballed facility.

Interested parties, said Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) Assistant General Manager Tirso G. Serrano, have until today to submit their letters of intent to participate in the bidding.

"We have to move forward. We published the bid notice last week for the general contractor who will undertake completion and remediation works in the terminal. We want to do the bidding within the month," Mr. Serrano said.

He said less than 10 companies had been pre-qualified to bid but declined to be more specific. He said these were a mix of local and foreign companies and that there were "big names" involved.

Takenaka has had a testy time with the government regarding NAIA-3’s completion. Malacañang last year declared that it had dropped the Japanese firm following disagreements over the scope of work involved and compensation, but later backtracked.

Last February, the government again announced that it had axed Takenaka, but the firm filed an appeal in March.

Takenaka officials were not immediately available for comment.

"We tried to work with Takenaka’s proposal but it was just not acceptable with regard to safety and structural issues," Mr. Serrano said.

The Joint Foreign Chambers, which has long called for NAIA-3’s opening, is taking on a wait-and-see attitude.

"There are indications that the terminal could be opened within the year but we are taking that with a grain of salt," European Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines Executive Vice-President Henry Schumacher said

Mr. Serrano said the MIAA was pushing for a yearend opening. — Bernardette S. Sto. Domingo

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