Although business travel in Mexico is expected to take three years to recover from the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, Guadalajara is banking on a 2023 rebound and going forward with a planned airport expansion.
The Pacific Airport Group (GAP) which operates the Guadalajara International Airport, has begun construction of a second runway, part of a five-year plan to increase the airport’s capacity that will likely see a two-year delay due to the events of 2020.
News that work had begun on the runway was shared at a meeting with representatives of the meetings and conventions sector who gathered to discuss accelerating its revitalization.
Present at the meeting was the president of Expo Guadalajara, Guillermo Cervantes Fernández, who said that GAP “had announced a very important investment before the pandemic for the airports of Guadalajara and Puerto Vallarta and [Sunday] they ratified it, although with a different calendar due to the pandemic, but they confirmed that all its investments will be made by 2026.”
The planned expansion gives Jalisco an opportunity to continue its growth of the meetings and conventions industry, despite projections that 2021 will see a 30% decline in that sector from 2019 numbers.
Last year 597 meetings and conventions brought two million visitors and created an economic spillover of 21.7 billion pesos, just over US $1 billion, but this year Cervantes expects that number to be just 10 billion pesos.
The airport expansion had previously been delayed due to a dispute with communal landowners who said they had not been compensated for the 1951 expropriation of land for the facility and refused to give up any more land.
But the airport operator announced in August 2019 it would build a new runway on land it already owns.
Source: El Economista (sp)