EXCLUSIVE: Saudi Arabia airport PPPs continue to face delays

30 October 2018
General Authority of Civil Aviation awarded four airport PPP contracts in 2017

The four airport public-private partnership (PPP) contracts that Saudi Arabia's General Authority of Civil Aviation (Gaca) awarded to two separate consortiums in 2017 have yet to reach financial close, according to sources familiar with the schemes.

Both consortiums previously stated that they were aiming to reach financial close by early or mid-2018.

A team of Tukey’s TAV Airports and the local Al-Rajhi Holding Group won the 30-year concession agreement to build, transfer and operate (BTO) airport passenger terminals in Yanbu, Qassim and Hail.

A second team, comprising Lebanon’s Consolidated Contractors Company, Germany’s Munich Airport International and local firm Asyad Group, won the BTO contract to develop Taif International airport.

It is understood that the first consortium was seeking approximately $600m in financing. Banque Saudi Fransi (BSF) is the lead arranger for the three airport PPP contracts, while US/Indian Synergy Consulting and UK-based Norton Rose Fulbright are the financial and legal advisers to the team, respectively.

Financial close is achieved once terms and conditions of a project finance structure have been agreed and the authorised entity can start drawing down from the fund or loan to start the project.

In 2012, National Commercial Bank (NCB), Sabb and Arab National Bank provided $1.2bn financing for the development of Prince Mohammed bin Abdulaziz International airport in Medina, the kingdom’s first airport PPP.





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