RIO DE JANEIRO, Nov 12 (Reuters) - Brazil’s government aims to auction the rights to operate its two most desirable domestic airports, in Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, between the end of 2021 and beginning of 2022, Infrastructure Minister Tarcisio de Freitas said on Tuesday.
This will be part of a wider process of opening up Brazil’s privatization and concessions program that will see 22 airport concessions next year, and a further 19 at the end of 2021 or beginning of 2022 at the latest.
Congonhas in Sao Paulo and Santos Dumont in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil’s two most profitable airports in the country’s two biggest metropolises, will be part of that latter group, de Freitas said.
The 2020 auctions will be divided into three lots, with the airports of Manaus, Goiania and Curitiba the main concessions.
Asked about the Rio de Janeiro state government’s plan to reduce the ICMS tax on aviation fuel to 7% from 13%, de Freitas said this is something the federal government has encouraged states to do.
“Sao Paulo has done this and now the Rio government is doing it. This is always linked to the greater number of routes and flights as a way to offset the tax reduction,” he said at an event hosted by the Brazilian Center for International Relations in Rio de Janeiro. (Reporting by Rodrigo Viga Gaier Writing by Jamie McGeever Editing by Nick Zieminski)