The new Spanish government has called a halt to the privatisation plans for Madrid's Barajas and Barcelona's El Prat airports, it has been revealed.
According to Reuters, at a news conference today (January 23) the country’s new public works minister Ana Pastor said that the current economic climate was not conducive to the sale and as a result it would be put on ice.
Last year the previous government announced plans to sell the national airport authority Aena’s majority stakes in Madrid Barajas and Barcelona–El Prat while at the same time work on the privatisation of up to 49% of its assets.
Today, Pastor told reporters that the current government, which took power in November 2011, would suspend the plans to privatise the two main airports, due to challenging market conditions.
The last administration had announced a tender for 90% of a 20-year concession to run Aena's main assets and had hoped to raise at least €5.3 billion from the privatisation to help cut the country's debt.
At the end of last year it was revealed that Ferrovial Aeropuertos, GMR Infrastructure Limited and Changi Airports International were among seven consortiums bidding to operate the gateways.