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Mexico’s president launches three mega-projects for 2019

Mexico City, Mexico — Three major projects that have been proposed by Mexico’s newly elected president will see the country’s economic development boosted over his six-year term starting this year.

The government of Andrés Manuel López Obrador has proposed three major infrastructure projects to boost Mexico’s economic development during his term. The mega-projects include fuel refining, aeronautical communication and rail transport.

Behind these infrastructure plans are promises of a 4 percent growth in the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), a more modest goal than the previous government of Enrique Peña Nieto of 5 percent.

The three infrastructure projects of López Obrador’s administration are one, the Dos Bocas Refinery, which is the seventh fuel refining complex of Petróleos Mexicanos (Pemex) in Tabasco.

The objective of the plan is to contribute to self-sufficient energy since Mexico currently imports 70 percent of the gasoline and diesel it consumes. The tender for this project is expected for March.

A second project during his administration is the airport of Santa Lucia. His proposal alternates with the New International Airport of Mexico (NAIM), which was proposed by the previous president Enrique Peña Nieto.

The goal is to relieve the aeronautical congestion facing the current International Airport of Mexico City. The cost of the project will be around 70 billion peso, however, the first obstacle for the Santa Lucía runways has been with the debt holders of the Texcoco project who have repeatedly rejected the repurchase of government bonds. The second is technical feasibility, which has been criticized by multiple international organizations.

Lopez Obrador’s goal is to add two runways to the military air base at Santa Lucia with 47 km of roadway then connect Benito Juarez International Airport with Santa Lucia. He says construction will begin in January of 2019, with runways being constructed in March and the whole thing ready in three years.

The third mega-project announced by Mexico’s president is the Maya Train which is set as an iron transport service for passengers and cargo that will interconnect the main cities and tourist areas of the Yucatan Peninsula.

He has announced the goal of the train project is to promote the socioeconomic development of the region and local communities as well as promote social inclusion and job creation while also strengthening the tourism industry in Mexico.

When complete, the Maya Train project will consist of 1,525 km of track across 17 stations that will cover Tabasco, Campeche, Yucatán, Chiapas and Quintana Roo.

Lopez Obrador says there is already $296 million in Mexico’s 2019 budget for the project, adding that another $741 to $890 million is needed. On December 16, an indigenous ceremony near the ancient Mayan ruins of Palenque was held to officially launch the Maya Train project.