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07 February, 2012

Brazil privatises operations at three airports

Brazil privatises operations at three airports

Brazil's government has awarded contracts to privatise operations at three of its most important state-owned airports.
Sao Paulo airportBrazil will soon play host to two global sports events, and will have South America's largest airline
They include the country's largest in Sao Paulo.

Private companies paid a total of 24.5bn reais ($14bn; £8.9bn) for the concessions sold at auction.

The move by the government aims to get the country's overcrowded airports ready for the 2014 World Cup and the Olympics in 2016.

Infraero, the state-run agency that has long operated airports, retains a 49% stake in the consortiums that will run the newly-privatised airports.

A consortium of Brazilians and South Africans paid about $9bn to operate Sao Paulo's Garulhos airport for 30 years.

The other airports involved are: Viracopos airport in Campinas - sold to French and Brazilian firms; and the concession for a new terminal in the capital's President Juscelino Kubitschek airport, which went to a Brazilian and Argentine consortium.

The three airports together account for 30% of passenger traffic in Brazil, whose economy has been booming for the past decade.

Recently, Brazil's largest airline TAM Linhas Aereas said it would join with Chile's LAN to create the biggest carrier in the region.

TAM said the combined airline would fly to 115 destinations in 23 countries, and have a 40,000-strong workforce.

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