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THE Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) has shelved plans to put up a budget terminal.

“We already finished the design and it’s ready for implementation but because … Terminal 3 was opened at that time, we deferred it. We just want to be cautious with the use of our resources,” MIAA general manager Alfonso Cusi said at the sidelines of the 28th Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) International Airport Association Conference last week.

“It may be difficult to build a budget terminal at this point because it’s the election period but it could still be pushed by the next administration.”

The area where the Philippine Aeronautics Training School is, adjacent to the old domestic terminal in Pasay City, has been identified as possible site of the budget terminal.

Low-cost carriers operating in the Philippines include Cebu Pacific, Jetstar, and Zest Air.

Last year, domestic passengers grew 21% despite the global economic crisis and the bird flu scare.

The country’s major airports are nearing saturation point, programmed as they are to only handle 30 million passengers. Current traffic is now at 25 million.

The ASEAN meeting discussed strategic planning for airport development, quality management system for institutional airport improvement, character building for airport workers and global trends for airport capacity building.

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