Chelsea hoping for Swiss challenge for Davao airport modernization this year

CHELSEA Logistics and Infrastructure Holdings Corp. is hoping to advance its proposal to modernize the Davao International Airport to the Swiss challenge stage this year, its top official said.

“We are awaiting for the final approvals after the revisions, then hopefully can proceed to the next step which is the Swiss challenge,” Chelsea Logistics President and Chief Executive Officer Chryss Alfonsus V. Damuy told BusinessWorld in a phone message on April 16.

The company is “hoping” that the Swiss challenge will take place this year, he added.

The proposal, Mr. Damuy noted, underwent revisions to include the pandemic impact and other requirements.

The proposal “went (through) several iterations between and among NEDA (National Economic and Development Authority), DoTr (Department of Transportation), CAAP (Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines), and the proponent, Chelsea Logistics,” according to a statement from CAAP forwarded to BusinessWorld by Transportation Assistant Secretary Goddes Hope O. Libiran on April 16.

“Basically, NEDA wanted the proponent, which was also true for other PPP (public-private partnership) proponents, to comply with some necessary revisions and additional requirements, through DOTr and CAAP in compliance with relevant legal provisions for similar PPP proposals,” CAAP noted.

“Just today, April 16, 2021, CAAP transmitted to NEDA the project evaluation report, revised PE (project evaluation) forms, jobs generation report, proponent’s letter indicating sufficiency of net worth to undertake the project, financial and economic models, and revised draft concession agreement, all in compliance with the ICC (Investment Coordination Committee) checklist of documentary requirements,” it added.

Chelsea Logistics was granted the original proponent status for the airport modernization project in 2018. It was initially set at P49 billion.

The project involves the reconfiguration and expansion of the airport’s terminal building, the construction of a parallel taxiway, the improvement of airside and landside facilities, and the installation of modern airport information technology systems. — Arjay L. Balinbin