QUITO, ECUADOR: The Mayor of Quito, Ecuador, signed an agreement on Monday to formalize Quito's partnership with the global concessionaire Quiport to manage Quito's new international airport.
The new airport replaces the existing Mariscal Sucre Airport in the center of the city and is the only new international airport currently under construction in Latin America. It will be located roughly 15 miles outside the capital in Tababela.
"The city of Quito is excited about this opportunity which will provide excellent possibilities for growth in our tourism, exports, businesses and services," said Augusto Barrera, Mayor of Quito. "It brings us great promise and hope for job creation and development in our country."
The new facility is set at a lower altitude and will have longer runways, improving the safety of passengers to and from Ecuador's capital city and relieving thousands of Ecuadorians of living near Mariscal Sucre Airport. The new airport's improved infrastructure will make it easy for airlines to expand their services to Quito and allow for improved international service.
Airport construction is on schedule for completion in the summer of 2012 and has already created over 5,000 jobs, according to Quiport, a private capital firm formed by investors in Canada, Brazil and the United States including the Houston Airport System Development Corporation. Quiport will lead the airport's construction, management system and administration.
The $684 million agreement with Quiport comes less than a week after Ecuador completed three loan agreements with the Inter-American Development Bank totaling $212 million for improvements to the country's infrastructure.
"We're thrilled to see that investment and trust in Ecuador is growing quickly and we're confident these projects will continue to help our nation grow and reach its full potential," said Luis Gallegos, Ecuador's Ambassador to the United States.
(BNO NEWS )