ILOILO City – Iloilo province’s component city, Passi, is considering the establishment of an airport to promote further economic growth in the region.
In a phone interview Monday, Passi City mayor Stephen Palmares said the plan to build an airport is a proof that the local government is thinking ahead on trade and economy of the city.
Palmares said there is still a need to establish an airport in central Panay despite having Iloilo International Airport in Cabatuan, Iloilo province; Roxas Airport in Capiz province; and Kalibo International Airport in Aklan province.
“It will create an economic boost not only here in Passi City but of the whole central Panay. Generally, when goods arrive here from other areas, it will jive in our plan to put up an economic zone. Also, when we have the airport, we can easily export our goods from the economic zone of Passi,” he added.
He said the airport is an “ideal means” to facilitate the transport of goods, as Passi is located far from seaports.
“We are thinking of ways on how to improve our area and one way of improving it is to create a channel to hasten the export of goods. We want our area to be ready for development that will come in the near future,” the Mayor said.
The proposal of the city government to build an airport was already forwarded to the Regional Development Council.
Meanwhile, the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines has already conducted its sight inspection in Santo Tomas village which is being considered as the location of the airport.
Palmares said the airport establishment might be supported by the government, or will work through a public-private partnership.
The flights to be catered by the airport will still be determined through a feasibility study.
“Whether it is for commercial or for trade, what is important is it can help boost the economic positioning of Passi and the central Panay,” he said.
Palmares further said those who will conduct and fund the feasibility study will soon be identified.
“If we can enter into a public-private partnership, it will be better because the private partner can shoulder the feasibility study. As a mayor, I will make sure that the finances of the city will not be affected because of this,” he added. (PNA)