In the midst of a high-profile corruption scandal that is changing the country, Brazil’s new government faces a challenging goal: to restore economic growth and regain foreign investors’ confidence. President Michel Temer (who replaced Dilma Rousseff after her impeachment) will serve until the next presidential election in 2018, and is working with a new economic team on measures to cut down on public expenditures, including tax, labor and social security reforms.
Along with the long-awaited structural reforms, the Federal Government is taking steps to boost infrastructure development. In September, a project entitled “Projeto Crescer” (Project Growth) was announced to introduce over 30 projects for the concession and/or privatization of airports, roads, ports, railways, mining, electric power and water treatment facilities for 2017 and 2018. These projects will be ruled by the Investment Partnership Program – PPI (Law No. 13,334/2016), which effected new measures to facilitate the participation of foreign investors. A few key aspects of the PPI include the publication of bid notices in English and Portuguese and the establishment of the Investment Partnership Council, which will be responsible for monitoring development. In addition, the projects under the PPI are to be treated as a national priority by the governmental authorities responsible for issuing the licenses or permits required for the implementation and execution of the projects.
The first contracts under Projeto Crescer were signed on November 16th, to extend existing concessions in the ports of Salvador and Paranagua. Combined, the projects involve an investment of US$ 243 million. Public bids for airports in Salvador, Florianopolis, Fortaleza and Porto Alegre are anticipated to be published in the upcoming weeks.