The $14b New Manila International Airport Project by SMC

Bulacan Airport will be one of the largest and most ambitious infrastructure project of SMC in the Philippines

New Manila International Airport


US$14 billion to be invested in new airport

According to San Miguel Corporation’s full report, “SMC’s proposed New Manila International Airport (NMIA) will be one of the largest and most ambitious infrastructure projects in the country. It will raise the Philippines’ competitiveness as an investment and tourism destination, boost both local and the national economies, and greatly improve air travel for Filipinos. It is seen to help generate some 40 million indirect tourism-related jobs when fully operational.

Because in truth, the NMIA project, for San Miguel, goes beyond just building a structure.

For sure, the sheer scale of the development can’t be downplayed. With an investment totaling some US$14 billion, NMIA will feature four parallel runways, with more than four times the constrained capacity of the existing intersecting runways of NAIA.

There is ample space to construct a high-capacity runway system and airport complex that will ensure the efficient handling of 100 million passengers per year. The entire development, consisting of worldclass terminals and airport facilities, will be built on a 2,500-hectare property in Bulakan, Bulacan, adjacent to the Manila Bay.

Dubbed an “aerotropolis”, it will have its own seaport, industrial, residential, commercial, and institutional zones. Also included in its design is the development of a new government center making vital government services more accessible to fast-growing areas in Central Luzon. 


All this will be accessible from Metro Manila in less than thirty minutes, via interconnected expressways and rail—including a shoreline expressway that will traverse Manila Bay and head straight to NMIA.

NMIA will mean many things for the Philippines. It will be a showcase of what Filipinos can do. It is a long overdue and much-needed solution to problems rooted in our aging and inefficient airports—where flight delays and congestion are the norm.

Filipino travelers will have a greater sense of pride when they fly in from other countries. Facilities will be more than adequate, service levels will be consistently high, there will be zero delays caused by air, runway or taxiway congestion.

Airport congestion is a serious problem that both airlines and passengers have to contend with. In the present NAIA, annual losses of airlines brought about by air traffic congestion are estimated to reach more than P10 billion per year. This will continue to grow if no new airport capacities are built.

On the other hand, productivity losses of passengers are estimated to amount to more than P15 billion per year.

Moving the country’s main gateway out of Metro Manila will also help alleviate the nightmarish traffic situation on major and secondary roads in cities around the present airport—Paranaque, Pasay, Las Piñas, Manila, Makati—and beyond.

The NMIA will signal to the world that the Philippines is finally ready to take its place among the ranks of Asia’s rising economies. It will boost tourism, raise our profile as an investment destination, and increase the competitiveness of our industries—including manufacturing and exports. It can even help bring about the development of new, technology-based industries.

Overall, it is seen to add an estimated P400 billion to the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and generate at least one million jobs.

In 2018, the Philippines recorded some 7.1 million tourist arrivals. We are well behind our ASEAN neighbors such as Thailand (38.27 million tourists), Malaysia (33.1 million tourists), Singapore (18.5 million), Indonesia (15.8 million), and Vietnam (15.5 million).

If the Philippines can reach 20 million tourists, then that will equate to an estimated 40 million new tourism industry-related jobs.

The government’s Build Build Build program promises to fix our country’s infrastructure gaps. Boracay’s successful rehabilitation has made headlines all over the world, sparking renewed interest in our islands. It also serves as a model for our other tourist destinations.

Once complete, the NMIA is envisioned to be among the best airports in the region: the game-changer the Philippines has needed all this time.”

Main Three Contractors

Groupe ADPi, Meinhardt Group and Jacobs has been awarded by San Miguel Corporation to design and build this $14 billion airport in the Philippines.

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Read our exclusive interview with Steve Demetriou, Chairman and CEO of Jacobs (click here)


The proposed new international “aerotropolis”, or a metropolis revolving around an airport, would involve a massive airport complex to be built at a 2,500-hectare flatlands along Manila Bay in Bulakan town, Bulacan province north of Metro Manila or 27 kilometers from the present NAIA.

A shoreline expressway from the NAIA Expressway cutting through Manila and Navotas straight to the New Manila International Airport was proposed as part of the expressway component of the new airport.

SMC will also build an expressway that will link its airport to the North Luzon Expressway in Marilao, Bulacan.

With the concession agreement approved, the proposal will be subjected to Swiss challenge. The Swiss challenge was scheduled in mid-January this year.

Under a Swiss challenge, other companies can bid for the project, after which the original proponent that submitted the unsolicited proposal will be allowed to match or submit a better bid before the project is awarded.

Investment Summary

According to Asiasec Equities, Inc., “the unsolicited proposal of SMC and its President Ramon S. Ang (RSA) to build a modern, stateof-the-art Aerotropolis in Bulacan is envisioned to solve airport congestion and other problems, and enhance the travel experience of visitors considering the fact that the Philippines are trying to attract more tourists. RSA described it as a “game-changer.” SMC says they have the funds to go at it alone. No guarantees needed from the government. This is significantly different from the deal given by the PNOY administration to the Megawide-GMR group that bagged the contract to build and manage the Cebu airport. They agreed to pay the consortium P20bn in the event that government decides to put up another airport near Cebu. SMC’s airport will be state-of-the-art as it will be built on a 1,200-hectare site versus NAIA’s 600 and will be capable of servicing 100mn passengers—more than three times that of NAIA. Moreover, it will have FOUR parallel runways!…with the option of adding TWO more. If the project starts this year, SMC estimates it can complete it by 2025. SMC also said that the airport will be 45 minutes away from any point in Metro Manila and accessible via multiple expressways. RSA also promised to address the perennial flooding problem in Bulacan by building a spillway that will flush water directly into Manila Bay.”

Construction of Skyway Stage 3 to be completed this year!

Asiasec Equities, Inc. added that “the company said that it sees the completion of the roadway linking SLEX and NLEX in 2019. SMC admitted encountering delays in the project because of right-of-way (ROW) issues and transfer of electricity lines by the NGCP. In line the completion, SMC said that they are coordinating with government and private units for a re-routing of the traffic so they can go full-blast in the construction of the Balintawak section. No less than RSA is leading efforts for its completion—going the extra mile in addressing ROW problems. He even is willing to advance the payment for the ROW in order for the project to be fasttracked such as the case with their TPLEX project. Also, SMC indicated it will be using RFiDs for vehicles on the Connector to allow it to be integrated into all SMC expressways (the RFiDs will hasten flow). This will allow for greater convenience to the public, which is paramount to the company.”


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San Miguel Corporation and Asiasec Equities, Inc.


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Engr Eva Allanigue
Chemical Engineering graduate with a passion in writing weird stuff at GineersNow. Official globe-trotter with luxury luggage, bags & accessories. Follow me on Linkedin

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The $14b New Manila International Airport Project by SMC

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