MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines is temporarily imposing a moratorium on the issuance of permits to foreign airlines planning to mount flights to Manila due to the limited capacity of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).
Sources said the Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB) has denied the application of Oman Air and Jet Airways of India to fly to Manila due to constricted infrastructure at the 30-year-old international gateway.
“We are denying foreign airlines such as Oman and Jet Airways. It’s not that the market is becoming less vibrant. It is due to the infrastructure,” one of the sources said.
The sources pointed out that aside from the congested NAIA, other airports in different parts of the country could not accommodate night flights.
“Most airports in the country are not night rated and are limited to day time operations in many airports. Most of the domestic flights are connecting to Manila,” the source added.
Both Oman Air and Jet Airways have filed separate applications with the CAB for the issuance of Foreign Air Carrier’s permit (FACP) to operate international scheduled air transportation services.
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The CAB issued FACP to foreign airlines allowing them to operate in the country and also issues Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity to local airlines allowing them to mount flights in the country.
As of end of last year, the CAB has granted FACP to 39 foreign airlines allowing them to operate in the Philippine.
Oman Air – the flagship company of the Sultanate of Oman’s Civil Aviation sector – and China-based Spring Airlines Co. Ltd. are seeking the authority to operate international scheduled air transportation services in the Philippines.
Oman Air which started operations in 1993 has a fleet of 15 Boeing 737-800, seven Airbus A330, and four Embraer E-175 while Spring Airlines operate 33 Airbus A320 aircraft.