Rwanda: Gov’t inks $418m deal with Portuguese firm for Bugesera airport

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By Our Reporter

Rwanda is betting on the construction of a new international airport in Bugesera in the eastern province to improve its competitiveness as a regional conference hub.
Yesterday on Thursday 1st September, the government signed the most publised agreement with Portuguese firm Mota-Engil Africa to inject an initial investment of $418 million towards its development.
The total cost of the Bugesera International Airport is estimated at $800 million, according to Manuel Mota, the CEO of Mota-Engil Africa.
Bugesera, – which will become Rwanda’s biggest airport – located 25km southeast of the capital Kigali, will have a 4.2km runway and an initial capacity to handle three million passengers per year. The airport is estimated to handle 4.5 million passengers per year upon completion.
“The new airport will enhance Rwanda’s economic growth and development and serve as a gateway to the external world. It will facilitate trade and investment and act as a hub for RwandAir’s growth strategy and other commercial airlines serving in the region,” Rwanda’s Minister of Finance, Claver Gatete said in a statement.
The first phase of the project is expected to be completed by December 2018.
According to the agreement which Great Lakes Voice have seen, Mota-Engil will finance and operate the new airport for a period of 25 years with an optional 15 years extension. but the background of the deal has been kept secret.
With actual construction works set to begin in June next year, the investor has less than two years to meet the December 2018 deadline, a challenge that Mr Mota said he is confident his company would attain.
Mota-Engil Africa has presence in eleven countries in the continent, boasts assets worth $1.5 billion and is listed on the Lisbon Stock Exchange.
Mota-Engil has also done facelift works at Rwanda’s only airport, Kigali international Airport.

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