After the cancellation of the new airport in Mexico, investors “flew” with their capitals to Peru
LIMA Peru. (Times Media Mexico) AMLO’s decision to cancel a US$13 billion airport has encouraged investors to participate in the expansion of Peru’s main air terminal, according to the project director.
Anton Aramayo, who oversees the plans at Lima Airport Partners, said dozens of international companies are interested in bidding for about US$1.2 billion in work to build a second runway and a new passenger terminal.
One of the few airport projects currently underway in South America, the Lima unit of Frankfurt airport operator Fraport AG, has attracted the interest of Bechtel Group Inc, China Harbour Engineering Co. Ltd. and Ferrovial SA along with other infrastructure giants. Los Angeles-based Aecom is overseeing the design of the airport.
Last year’s cancellation of Mexico’s giant Texcoco airport helps explain the interest. Aramayo says strong demand for engineering contracts could help reduce the overall cost of the airport’s expansion, which is currently estimated at about US$1.5 billion, he said.
“The international interest has been gigantic,” Aramayo said by phone from Lima. The project is long overdue. Jorge Chávez International Airport will receive more than 23 million passengers this year, compared to about 10 million a decade ago.
The expansion was suspended for more than a decade because of delays in the expropriation of the 600 hectares (1,600 acres) needed to build a second runway. In 2017 there was a breakthrough and construction work began this month in order to prepare the ground for the new runway and traffic control tower. Spain’s Obrascón Huarte Lain SA and Peru’s Cosapi SA were awarded the earthmoving contract.
The new terminal will have capacity for 35 million passengers when completed in 2024. Its design will facilitate further expansion that will increase capacity to 50 million by 2041.
Years of rapid economic growth and increasing tourist arrivals have pushed the airport to its limits. Peru has doubled the number of tourist arrivals in the last decade to 4.4 million last year, with more than half arriving through Jorge Chavez Airport. The country is now the only major economy in South America whose main airport is based on a single runway.
The second runway and additional hangars will allow the airport to double the number of flights and leave it well positioned to become a South American hub by 2024, Aramayo said. Based in Santiago, Latam Airlines Group SA already uses Lima as its main airport.
The Yucatan Times
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