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VINCI Airports has signed a 25-year concession agreement for the financing, development through construction and reconstruction, maintenance and management of infrastructure of Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport.
As reported on this platform, the tender for the project was launched in February 2017. VINCI submitted a bid, alongside three consortia, in December, and was selected as preferred bidder in January, signalling its victory over competitors that included Meridiam, Eiffage, GMR Infrastructure and Incheon International Airport Corporation.
VINCI's offer corresponds to EUR1.5 billion (US$1.85 billion) investment. The company offered to pay EUR501 million US$618.8 million) upfront, and invest an additional EUR732 million (US$904.2 million) over the concession period, as well as annual payments of between EUR4.3 and 16 million.
Located in the capital of the Republic of Serbia, Belgrade Nikola Tesla is the country’s main airport, serving as the hub of Serbian flag carrier Air Serbia, which accounts for more than 50% of the airport’s passenger traffic. It welcomed 5.3 million passengers in 2017.
The signing of the concession agreement has initiated a six month period during which VINCI Airports has to meet certain conditions detailed in the agreement, such as the signing and entry into force of the financing agreements. Once these conditions are met, the concession will start.
As concessionaire, VINCI Airports will aim at improving airport operating conditions to enable Air Serbia to offer new long-haul routes as part of its hub strategy. VINCI Airports will build on its partnerships with over 200 airlines to further increase the airport’s traffic and connectivity, in line with Serbia’s strong economic growth potential.
This success marks VINCI Airports' expansion into Southeast Europe, a geographical area in which the company has not operated until now. Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport will serve as the company's regional hub.