KINGSTON, Jamaica, Friday October 18, 2019 – The management of the Norman Manley International Airport (NMIA) has officially been handed over by Government to PAC Kingston Airport Limited (PACKAL).
Last October, the Airports Authority of Jamaica (AAJ) signed a 25-year concession agreement with Mexican firm Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacifico (GAP), for operation of the facility through its local subsidiary, PACKAL. The company has the option to renew for an additional five years
Speaking at the handover ceremony at the airport in Kingston on Wednesday, Minister of Transport and Mining Robert Montague emphasized that NMIA belongs to the Government and people of Jamaica.
“What we are divesting is the management of the airport but we will not be giving up the monitoring and regulatory roles. Those are responsibilities of the Government through the Airports Authority of Jamaica,” he said.
He noted that one of the major monitoring roles that the AAJ will have is to ensure that the operators undertake the agreed infrastructure improvements.
GAP has committed to invest US$60 million in the development of the airport during the first three years of operation, under a modernisation plan that is expected to cost more than US$100 million.
Minister Montague noted that the Mexican company, which also manages the Sangster International Airport (SIA) in St James, has “distinguished itself” in the operation of that facility.
“GAP has an enviable record of bringing our Montego Bay airport to being the number one airport in the Caribbean,” he said, adding that the company is expected to do the same for Kingston.
Noting that 1.7 million passengers passed through NMIA in 2018, Minister Montague said there is opportunity for growth, and once the operators can market aggressively, the Kingston airport has the potential to surpass SIA.
Meanwhile, Minister Montague said that Jamaica is committed to ensuring a favourable climate for investment.
“This Government is open for business and we are business-oriented and we want to create the space for business persons to invest and get back their money,” he said.