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The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) and Manila International Airport Authority (MIAA) are extending the period for deferred collection of various fees and charges from  airport concessionaires.

Payments for landing/takeoff, parking, and aeronautical fees were also deferred for a year.

In a recent virtual press briefing led by Transport Secretary Arthur Tugade, actions which may be taken by the Department of Transportation to address the coronavirus pandemic, and guidelines to be implemented for areas under general community quarantine (GCQ) were discussed.

During the briefing, CAAP Director General Jim Sydiongco said the agency has deferred once again collection of several fees and charges, including lease or rental fees from airport concessionaires.

The rental holiday has been extended until May 15, 2020, following extension of the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) period in Metro Manila and other high risk areas. A rental holiday was initially granted from March 15 to April 30, 2020.

“Further rental holidays will be discussed and possibly agreed upon as the situation progresses. At present, the threat of COVID-19 remains and continues to increase that’s why we have to act and help the airline industry recover,” Sydiongco said.

Additionally, a one-year deferment on the collection of landing/take-off and parking fees for domestic and international flights has been implemented in all CAAP-operated airports.

The deferment started on March 12, 2020 and is effective until March 12, 2021.

For MIAA, the collection of aeronautical fees of local air carriers has been deferred, too, for a year effective March 1, 2020 billings. Rental charges of all concessionaires operating at the terminals, including check-in counter charges are waived for two months effective March 15, 2020 or until the scheduled end of the ECQ.

Further, MIAA general manager Ed Monreal said interest charges for late settlement of account falling due within the ECQ period are waived. MIAA is also not imposing interest on the deferred collection of May 2020 rental.

“The [MIAA] Board has approved these agreements to unload the burden that the airline industry experiences during this time, especially that the recovery is seen to build up slowly even after the COVID-19 situation subsides,” Monreal said.

“The airline industry is one of the sectors hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. By deferring charges, we are supporting our airline concessionaires to thrive despite this unfortunate circumstance. We will continue helping each other until such time that the number of flights and passengers increase once again,” Tugade said.

Apart from the deferment of some airline charges and fees amid the COVID-19 crisis, new airport measures are being implemented to prevent the spread of the coronavirus disease.

Sydiongco said these include provision of sanitation items and foot baths in entry and exit points; and observance of routine disinfection for surfaces and equipment frequently exposed, such as screening equipment and trays at the security checkpoint and baggage areas.

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