Sao Paulo, Apr 7 (EFE) .- Brazil raised this Wednesday some 3.3 billion reais (about 600 million dollars) in the auction of 22 airports distributed in three regions of the country, the first of a series of concessions with which the Government hopes only this week to attract investments for 1.800 million dollars.
The amount collected was, on average, 3,822% higher than the minimum value demanded by the Executive of President Jair Bolsonaro, which was described as “successful” by the Minister of Infrastructure, Tarciso Freitas.
Brazilian group CCR was awarded the concession for the 30-year operation of two blocks (center and south) with a total of 15 terminals, while France’s Vinci won the tender for the north block, which includes 7 terminals.
In addition to paying for the concessions, the winners of the auction, held on the Sao Paulo Stock Exchange, promised to invest a total value of 6.1 billion reais (about $ 1 billion) in the terminals.
The bid, which had the participation of 7 national and international firms, including the Spanish AENA, occurs at a time when the airline sector is experiencing a serious crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
“What we did was audacious. The crisis of the pandemic affected the entire international air sector, the difficulty of cash is common, but we could not wait, we had to anticipate,” said the minister at a press conference, who considered that the The auction was “a victory for the Bolsonaro government.”
CCR IMPOSSES AENA IN THE MOST WANTED BLOCK
CCR promised to pay 2,128 million reais (about 386 million dollars), 1,534% more than the minimum required by the Government, for the southern block, which includes the airports of Curitiba, the tourist Foz do Iguazu, Bacacheri, Londrina , Navegantes, Jonville, Pelotas, Uruguaiana and Bagé.
The Brazilian firm’s proposal more than doubled that of the Spanish airport manager AENA, which offered 1,050 million reais (around 190 million dollars).
AENA, which only bid for the southern block, already operates in six Brazilian aerodromes, which were awarded to it in 2019.
For the central block, which has the airports of four regional capitals (Goiania, Palmas, Sao Luis and Teresina) and two medium-sized cities (Imperatriz and Petrolina), CCR will pay 754 million reais (137 million dollars), 9,156% more than the minimum.
Finally, Vinci, which only competed for the northern block with the Aerobrasil Consortium, will deposit 420 million reais (around 76.3 million dollars) for the license, a value 777.5% higher than the minimum requested.
The northern block, with seven terminals, has Manaus as its main attraction thanks to the movement generated by the free zone of this Amazonian city, and is completed by Tabatinga, Tefé, Porto Velho, Boa Vista, Rio Branco and Cruzeiro do Sul.
The 22 airports account for 11% of the national passenger air traffic, according to the National Civil Aviation Agency (Anac).
MORE AUCTIONS THIS WEEK
In addition to the 22 airports, the Government will grant this week another six infrastructure assets to the private sector.
This Thursday, the 537-kilometer stretch of the West-East Integration Railway that connects the cities of Ilheus and Caetité, an important mining and uranium-producing pole, in the northeast state of Bahia will be auctioned. The concessionaire commits to an investment of 3,300 million reais (600 million dollars).
The “Infra Week”, as this round has been baptized, concludes on Friday with the auction of the operations of four terminals in the port of Itaqui, in the state of Maranhao, and another in the port of Pelotas, in the southern Rio Grande do Sul, in which the government foresees investments of 600 million reais (about 100 million dollars) in improvements.
The Infrastructure Minister was optimistic about these upcoming auctions and stressed that this Wednesday’s auction has shown that investors “believe in the future of Brazil”, beyond “short-term problems.”
(c) EFE Agency