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Gordon vows to revive Subic Int'l Airport.

With his protegee, Wilma Eisma, at the helm of the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA), Sen. Richard Gordon on Tuesday vowed to instigate reforms in the agency that he once headed, lamenting that the former American naval base had been neglected, especially its international airport.

'We will work very hard to restore the glory of Subic Bay,' Gordon said in a speech during the commemoration of the 100th birthday of his father, the late Mayor James Leonard Gordon Sr.

Newly appointed SBMA Administrator Eisma, the executive assistant to Gordon when the latter served as SBMA chair and administrator, said she shared the vision of Gordon to make the old Subic Bay International Airport (SBIA) operational.

'We have to get the airport running. There's no excuse. We have the money. We have to do it,' she said.

Gordon said he had proposed a P540-million appropriation for the rehabilitation of the SBIA, including the upgrading of vital equipment like radar and instrument landing system.

'It took us 29 weeks to put [a] foot of concrete on top of that airport so that FedEx (Federal Express) would come in. We borrowed money from the World Bank and we paid that debt,' he told the crowd.

Courier giant FedEx shut down its Asian hub here and relocated to China in 2009.

Gordon had said the government wasted the economic impact of the Subic and Clark airports as well as Subic's sea port to generate opportunities in jobs and investments to Luzon by its failure to maximize these major infrastructure assets.

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Publication:Philippines Daily Inquirer (Makati City, Philippines)
Date:Jan 21, 2017
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