Bilyonaryo Lucio Tan’s Philippine Airlines is urging the government to increase international arrival caps at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport as part of efforts to help revive the economy.
International arrivals at NAIA is currently limited to a maximum of 2,000 per day.
“We only allowed 2,000 people into Manila for all airlines. Before the pandemic, it was 40,000 a day in Manila. Ang laki ng nabawas,” said Gilbert Santa Maria, president and COO of PAL during a forum.
Santa Maria also requested the government to lift some restrictions on vaccinated passengers to allow them to freely travel.
” For the sake of our economy, I beg the decision maker to listen to our economy and set up prudent policies that are very supportive of our economy. Wala namang silbi ang mag lock down tayo to have zero COVID but patay naman ang economy natin,” he said.
PAL SVP and chief strategy and planning officer Dexter C. Lee said airlines need recover at least 50 percent of its flights to break even.
In recent months, PAL has seen an improvement in its operations, averaging 27 percent of the pre-pandemic flights on 70 percent of its route network.
It plans to increase flights to some international destinations by October to meet the demand.