Murcia Region: Another airport for Aena in the Mediterranean

La manga del Mar Menor, in Murcia by Enrique Freire / Wikimedia Commons

Last week Vozpopuli announced that the government of the Autonomous Community of Murcia has given Sacyr a one week period to obtain a bank guarantee covering the loses for the first years of operation. Failure to obtain the guarantee would result in the definitive loss of the grant, which would be handed over to a new entity. That entity could be AENA. The president of the Autonomous Community, Alberto Garre has already announced that it would participate in the tender.

Garre had promised in May that Corvera would open in October or November. However, the date was delayed until the 2nd of April, a strategic moment as the autonomous elections will take place in May of 2015, just a month and a half after the opening. Now, this date can only be fulfilled if Sacyr (Aeromur) maintains its management of the airfield, which seems difficult.

Sacyr lost the management of the airport in September 2013 and with it the bank guarantee, which was the airport itself. Until then, they assure that they had paid all their quotas correctly. But the change in conditions damaged their financial situation. The licensee has declared itself “astonished and shocked” by the change of heart of Murcia, which it attributes to political motives. In fact, according to a publication in La Verdad, this change provoked the resignation of Manuel Campos as Councilor for Public Works for Murcia´s government. Campos had resumed the negotiations with Sacyr a year ago.

Sacyr Counterattack

The licensee threatened with “all the appropriate legal measures”. It is worried that they will give better conditions than the current ones to “a new operator”, perhaps thinking of AENA. The AENA president José Manuel Vargas was present this Monday at a meeting between Fomento-Sacyr-Murcia region in which the agreement was broken and the tone against Sacyr rose. Meanwhile, Sacyr is trying to avoid a public tender. In its opinion it will be “impossible to award while the legal situation of the current contract is not resolved. This will cause uncertainty over the opening date of the airport”, the company assured in a statement.

If AENA receives the management of Corvera in the end, it would have at its disposal three airports ready to run and recently renovated in an hour radius by car. For this reason, we have created a Google map with the location of all the airports open to commercial traffic situated near the Mediterranean Sea and the Murcia region. By clicking on the following image you can see the details.

Link to a map with details on the location of the Spanish airports near to the Mediterranean Sea

Link to a map with details on the location of the Spanish airports near to the Mediterranean Sea

The Murcia-San Javier Airport is only 29 kilometers from the Corvera Airport and includes a remodeled terminal into which AENA invested 70 million Euros between 2004 and 2011. To the north 95 kilometers of Corvera Airport is the Alicante airport, with passenger traffic growth above 10% in the last years.

The Corvera airport has no need to envy the Castellón Airport: the cost of the Castellón Airport was 150 million in investments; the ‘private’ Murcia airport has already cost 200 million Euros.


Photo: La Manga del Mar Menor, in Murcia by Enrique Freire / Wikimedia Commons