The National Assembly must approve this week the new General Law on Ports, an important request by domestic and foreign investors for major port development, and which has a consensus between the private sector and government.
"The new law eliminates the exclusivity of state investments in ports and allows development via private concessions of works of up to 20 years," reported Laprensa.com.ni.
One of the foreign groups interested is the Brazilian company Andrade Gutierrez, which is carrying out feasibility studies to build the mega port Monkey Point in the Caribbean.
Eduardo Fonseca, executive director of the Nicaraguan Chamber of Commerce (Caconic), see it is as positive that the national port law is being harmonized with those in other countries. "But recovering that investment (for the construction of a port) takes time and we believe the time period (20 years) of the concession is appropriate," said Fonseca.
The law allows private concessions for the construction of ports of up to 20 years.
Additionally, the initiative formally eliminates the government's monopoly on ports, gives the Legislative the ability to approve the construction of deep water ports as well as introducing fiscal benefits such as relief when buying construction materials.
The Assembly is to receive the bill toward the end of next month and its approval is expected by the end of the year.
Should this happen, by the second half of 2011 the tender process could be launched, according to predictions by the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and El Salvador's state ports authority (CEPA).
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