The Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) has welcomed the enactment into law of RA 11457 creating Davao International Airport Authority (DIAA).
President Rodrigo R. Duterte recently signed RA 11457 into law which creates the Davao International Airport Authority (DIAA) whose mandate is to manage airports in the Davao Region, including the city’s Francisco Bangoy International Airport.
In a statement, MinDA stated that signing the DIAA adds to the region and Mindanao’s competitive advantages as an investment and tourism destination in the ASEAN and BIMP-EAGA sub-region.
MinDA stated that as an airport authority with corporate nature, is now expects the development and improvement of the airport facilities, and responsive airport management.
The new law is one of the many advocacy efforts of MinDA, where the agency actively participated in the technical preparation and in the lobbying with policymakers leading to the enactment of the law.
The city’s business and tourism sectors welcomed the development as it views the creation of DIAA as a catalyst for the improvement of airport facilities and services and opening of more foreign direct flights.
Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry Inc (DCCCII) President Arturo M. Milan said Davaoeños can now expect a much faster development in the Davao International Airport (DIA) in terms of upgrading the terminal and the facilities and opening more foreign direct flights.
In an interview, Milan said the DIAA will make Davao as the premier gateway to Mindanao and to the BIMP-EAGA (Brunei Indonesia Malaysia Philippines-East Asean Growth Area) countries.
“Finally, the long wait is over.The terminal has to be expanded and I heard they will start second half of next year. Our terminal is a little bit congested already with so much flights coming from domestic and the four direct flights that we have,” he said.
Milan is expecting two international flights to be established in Davao within the year. He said this is why there is a need to expand the terminal that will also include the cargo handling facility because the city is looking at supplying international markets with food, hogs, and poultry.
In 2017, Milan has expressed urgency of converting the current set-up of DIA into an authority with local autonomy. He said there is a need of a more focused management through the creation of an independent authority similar to the Mactan-Cebu International Airport Authority (MCIAA).
“The long wait is over and we at the Davao City Chamber would like to thank the House of Representatives, the Senate, and the President for making Davao International Airport into an authority a reality,” he said.
On her end, Generose Tecson, City Tourism Operations Office (CTOO) head said she is also looking forward to see a more improved DIA.
“Before tourist arrivals, I think most importantly is the impression of the tourists when they come in in Davao. It’s the airport that gives you the first impression of what’s in a place and I am already looking forward to see a beautiful airport, one that showcases the culture of the region. Once people get in they get the feel of what Davao is really is all about,” she said.