Mexico's antitrust commission CFC has rejected airport operator Grupo Aeroportuario del Sureste's (Asur) bid to participate in the tender for a new airport in Riviera Maya in the Caribbean.
CFC president Eduardo Perez Motta said "The Riviera Maya airport is a historic opportunity to have competition between two neighboring airports. To allow the entrance of Asur would have put this opportunity at risk, and would have hurt consumers and tourism in the country's most important destination."
By excluding Asur, the CFC opens the door for rival Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacifico (GAP), to add a potentially high-traffic, defensive airport to its product mix.
Mexican airport operator GAP, and mining and railroads conglomerate Grupo Mexico, will compete for the tender along with Eurnekian's Corporacion America, Mexican construction firm Tradeco Infraestructura and an individual investor.
The Riviera Maya airport tender requires the construction of a terminal and a runway capable of receiving direct flights from as far as Europe, according to the Communications and Transport Ministry.
The Riviera Maya project, to be built with an investment of $263m, is expected to have passenger traffic of three million by its third year in operation.
The winner of the concession will be allowed to operate the airport for 50 years.