Portuguese Company, with Recent CCCC Stake, Obtains 30-year Concession for Mexico Road Project

On December 11, it was reported that Mota-Engil Mexico (MEM) had won a 30-year concession contract for the construction, operation, and maintenance of the $291 million Tultepec-AIFA-Piramides highway.  The news comes two weeks after the announcement that CCCC had acquired a significant stake in the company’s Portuguese parent, Mota-Engil, providing critical funding. 

MEM was the only bidder for the contract, and, according to BN Americas, a bidding process of this type would typically require at least three participants.  The Mexican government, however, has not commented on the tender requirement, and no public objections have been made over the tender process to RWR’s knowledge.

The 27 km highway is considered an important strategic project in Mexico, as it will not only be a major access point to the new Felipe Angeles International Airport but will also act as a major ring road connecting Mexico City to three main highways.  The news demonstrates how CCCC could become a more significant player in Latin America through Mota-Engil, which has an established reputation and track record in the region.

In November 2020, CCCC acquired a minority stake in MEM’s Portugal-based parent company, Mota-Engil SGPS SA, at an above-market rate that more than doubled the company’s capitalization at a time when the company faced serious financial struggles.  Although only a minority stake, the purchase made the Chinese company a critical financial benefactor for the Portuguese construction giant, leading to speculation that CCCC could have an outsized role in MGP’s decision-making.  The funds received through the acquisition are also expected to intensify MGP’s overseas expansion.

CCCC and Mota-Engil have already partnered on major infrastructure projects in Latin America, where Mota-Engil is considered among the top four engineering and construction companies.