Reports suggest that air traffic control services at Málaga’s airport are likely to be privatised in the next few months.  It is one of seven Spanish airports which the operator Aena has suggested could now take steps towards outsourcing control tower operations.

The Ministry of Transport wants to improve the competitiveness of Spanish airports and air transport with the aim of reducing ticket prices.  It claims that the use of private providers has so far generated positive improvements in efficiency and cost.  Almost all airports in the country are expected to undergo the same change in the course of time, although Madrid Barajas and Barcelona El Prat are presently excluded.

However, the proposal has not gone down well amongst the 86 air traffic controllers based in Málaga.  The group says that implementing a low-cost policy, as has already happened at Ibiza and Alicante, would be damaging to the area.  A spokesman was quoted last month claiming that the privatisation of the service would be “very serious” to the city of Málaga.

The Ministry of Transport says it is also presently considering such air traffic control privatisation at Palma de Mallorca, Tenerife South, Tenerife North, Gran Canaria, Bilbao and Santiago.  If it goes ahead, it would constitute the largest move in privatising the services since the government began to take such measures 13 years ago.