Cagayan International Airport in La-Lo, Cagayan will be open to commercial flights by the third quarter of this year, said an official from the Cagayan Economic Zone Authority (CEZA).
Joyce Jayme, CEZA public relations chief, said they are currently negotiating with prospective companies that can serve commercial flights to and from Hong Kong and Macau.
“Our schedule [to launch the airport] is still tentative as we are still awaiting permit from CAAP to operate the airport, which will initially cater to small jets. We are looking forward to opening the airport to commercial flights (Airbus 319/320 aircrafts) by the third quarter of this year,” she said in an email interview.
The passenger terminal building has a total floor area close to 1,000 square meters. It can easily be expanded to accommodate increased passenger traffic.
The 210-hectare airport is a project from the ground up, with a runway length of 2,100 meters and whose parking apron is designed to accommodate two Airbus A320s simultaneously.
The airport is about an hour away of flying time from NAIA, cutting the usual 12-hour land drive from Manila to Cagayan Freeport, where hotel, leisure, and gaming operations have expanded over the past years.
The Freeport is also being promoted as an ecotourism destination because of its proximity to Sta. Ana, Cagayan beaches and Palaui Island, the recent site of Survivor series.
Report by Paolo Abellanosa and Czarina Geronimo.