December 11, 2017 / 1:57 PM / 6 months ago

Low-cost airline Norwegian approved to operate in Argentina

BUENOS AIRES, Dec 11 (Reuters) - Argentina on Monday authorized low-cost airline Norwegian to fly about 60 aircraft in the country, opening 72 local and 80 international routes to the company starting next year in a move the government said would generate 3,200 direct jobs in Argentina.

In its official daily gazette, the Argentine government announced that Norwegian will have access to major airports in cities including Buenos Aires, Cordoba and Mendoza.

Norwegian, Europe’s third-largest budget airline by passenger numbers, will start operating in Argentina next year, investing a total of $4.3 billion to fly about 60 aircraft, the gazette announcement said. The concession has a 15-year lifespan before it can be considered for renewal, it said.

Norwegian is the latest in a series of low-cost airlines to be authorized to operate in Argentina in the past two years.

President Mauricio Macri, an advocate of free-markets, has said competition among carriers is the best way to keep air fares down. (Reporting by Walter Bianchi; Writing by Hugh Bronstein; Editing by Bill Trott)

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