Published on : Friday, June 30, 2017
The Clark International Airport (CRK) needs to increase additional international flights to serve Ilocanos abroad. An executive of the Department of Tourism (DOT) said this during the sixth leg of CRK’s North Luzon Road Show recently held in San Fernando City, La Union.
Martin Valera, DOT-Ilocos Region director said, “The Ilocano community in Region 1 (Ilocos) is urging Clark airport to market itself to other carriers to service more destinations, particularly Clark-Honolulu and to other parts of the US.” Ilocano migrants and Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) will greatly benefit from Clark’s direct flights abroad, according to Valera.
Valera said there are around three million Ilocanos living in the U.S. West Coast. California accounts for 47 percent of Filipinos in the US while Hawaii comes in second, hosting 10 percent of US-based Filipinos.
At present, Clark airport has daily and weekly flights to Incheon and Busan in South Korea, Hong Kong, Singapore, Macau, Dubai, and Doha. China Eastern Airlines will start its Shanghai-Clark route in October this year.
Alexander Cauguiran, chief of Clark International Airport Corporation (CIAC), said negotiations with major carriers are continuing for flights to Los Angeles. He expressed hopes that the route will commence within this year.
CRK has implemented programs to increase passenger traffic to as much as 1.5 million passengers by year-end. The new terminal building project, spearheaded by Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade and Bases Conversion and Development Authority president and chief executive officer Vivencio Dizon, is projected to be completed by the first quarter of 2020.