"Our company, Aena, prides itself on always respecting transparency". This Wednesday Maurici Lucena, president of the airport manager, has declared since the arrival of the PSOE in the Spanish government. Despite these words, Lucena has chosen to keep the historical secret on the economic results of the different airports that make up Aena. These results were published only once: forced to leave the stock market, Aena was forced to provide such information. The result: the El Prat airport contributed more than half of the airport's profit. Since then, you've never heard of anything else.
"We do not publish our activities, nor the assets we own", Lucena replied when this newspaper asked him what percentage of AENA's profits (1.232 million in 2017) comes from the airports of El Prat and Barajas. Later, the Lucena team explained to ARA that "this information is confidential in accordance with the provisions of the 18/2014 Act". This law effectively maintains confidential information, but leaves to the authorities the decision on what is considered confidential and what is not.
Lucena gave this answer during the presentation of the company's 2018 strategic plan, controlled by 51% for Spain. This plan is to increase profits by 3.2% and 5.5% for passengers this year. It also plans to distribute 80% of the net income to its shareholders in the form of dividends.
The plan does not seem to have convinced investors. After the presentation, Aena's shares have fallen dramatically. When there was a time of 4.4% at the closing of the market and finally the airport manager closed the day with a loss of 4.7%.
Waiting for the great project of El Prat
AENA will allocate 2,835 million euros to expand and remodel the two major airports of the company, Barajas-Adolfo Suárez and Barcelona-El Prat, to increase its capacity for passengers up to 2026.
In the case of Madrid, the capacity to expand to 80 million passengers has to be expanded – currently it has a satellite terminal on the T4 – and in the case of Barcelona, it is expected to reach 70 million. In this framework of action there is the project of the new building of the T1 satellite terminal, which at the moment is still waiting, although in principle Aena plans to respect the planned program.
"We are making significant changes, we have noticed that long-haul flights have increased," said Javier Marín, the commercial director of the regulated market, who said that "expansion will be carried out in the scheduled period between 2022 and 2026".
This satellite terminal of T1 was already the great project of the former Development Minister, Íñigo de la Serna, due to the increasing saturation of the air space suffered by the Prat. The Barcelona airport has exceeded 47 million passengers and has a capacity of 55 million passengers last year.
Moreover, when the T1 was built nine years ago, the project already envisaged the saturation of the airport by 2020.