New Mexico City Airport cancellation raises issues for the whole region

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Mexico’s incoming President-elect Andres Obrador, who takes power on 01-Dec-2018, said the government would “obey the will of its citizens” as manifested in a referendum in which 70% of those who voted said that the USD13.3 billion New Mexico City Airport project, currently under construction, should be abandoned.

The announcement came on almost the same day as the official opening ceremony for the new Istanbul Airport, where works began at broadly the same time.

The decision has implications for the capital city’s existing airport, Benito Juárez, for a military airbase which it is proposed should handle commercial traffic and, most intriguingly, for Toluca Airport, whose proposal for expansion to handle more commercial traffic was ignored in favour of a new facility that now looks as if it will not be completed.

There is also the possibility that the use of existing infrastructure over new will become the norm throughout Latin America as it has throughout North America now that the bar has been set in Mexico.  

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