INAEC president Jay R. Lopez (3rd from left) is joined by (from left) PHI base and contract manager Brian Currie, SPEX managing director AttyINAEC Aviation Corporation inaugurated on April 7, 2022 its second aircraft hangar (Hangar E2) inside Lio Airport in El Nido, Palawan.
INAEC president Benjamin R. Lopez (BRL) and board director Capt. Manuel Tamayo were joined by representatives from the El Nido government, Shell Philippines Exploration (SPEX), PHI International, Joint Task Force Malampaya and El Nido airport developer Ten Knots Development Corporation during the inauguration ceremony.
“This to us is more than just a structure. This represents a true milestone for INAEC. It is symbolic of a continuing and evolving partnership whose end objective is to keep the lights on in the Philippines. We are mindful of the fact that we live in a truly volatile and fast-changing world. Thus, we remain grateful for our present achievements and successes, including this new El Nido hangar,” BRL said.
INAEC has been operating in El Nido since the early 2000s, providing helicopter transport services to oil and gas producers in the country. In 2013, it built its first hangar in El Nido. The same year, it established its partnership with SPEX and PHI for the helicopter transport of Malampaya Project personnel from Puerto Princesa to the offshore platform.
INAEC’s Hangar E2 will serve as the new base for the helicopter operations servicing the Malampaya Project as SPEX moves to transfer operations from Puerto Princesa to El Nido.
Atty. Kiril Caral, managing director of SPEX, said: “The relocation of the helicopter base from Puerto Princesa to El Nido offers significant benefits to the Malampaya Project. Flight time for the transport of Malampaya personnel is reduced. Response time in case of medical evacuation will be faster. And there is improved access to search and rescue resources. including support from the Joint Task Force Malampaya, the Philippine Air Force, the Coast Guard and the Philippine Navy. All these mean improved safety, reliability and efficiency in our operations.”
Brian Currie, PHI’s base and contract manager, noted: “The infrastructure in El Nido has far outpaced other airports in the country. I expect this move to El Nido will reinvigorate our personnel as we finally emerge from two long years of the pandemic.”
Added Edgardo Sabenacio, El Nido’s emergency operations center operations division chief: “El Nido is not just a safe haven for everyone. El Nido is going to be a home. We are going to live in it, live with it and live for it.”
Construction of the 825- square meter Hangar E2 began in April 2021 and was completed in March 2022. (Story/Photos by: Maila Banaag)