These groups have concessions to operate various airports in the country and have recorded better profits than domestic airlines, as they have insured their income and increases in their rates, according to experts. Grupo Aeroportuario del Sureste (ASUR), which operates nine airports in the national territory, including the one in Cancún, obtained an operating cash flow of 9,539 million pesos in 2018, 3.6 times more than that reported in 2017.
While the Airport Group of the North Center (OMA), which manages thirteen airports in Mexico, including Acapulco, obtained in 2018 an operational cash flow or Ebitda of 4 thousand 484 million pesos, 26.7% higher than that reported in 2017.
In contrast, Aeromexico, the national airline with the largest presence in the country, reported a 34% drop in its operating cash flow from 7 thousand 294 million pesos to 4 thousand 808 million.
But Volaris did not have better results either since in the same year it obtained a negative operating cash flow of 379 million pesos.
This difference is due to the fact that airport groups have a captive market and are monopolies, while in the case of airlines, free competition rules, said Rogelio Rodríguez, an aeronautics expert.
He described that these groups have revenues from the collection of three types of services, including the landing and take-off charges paid by airlines, as well as the Airport Use Fee (TUA) charged to passengers.
"With those safe income and monopoly services have a high income, high margins," he said.
In addition, they can practically increase the tariffs for these services without opposition, since the federal government only approves them, but does not question them, he said.
He explained that the airport law allows airport groups to operate hubs as businesses without thinking of optimal management because they are free to impose tariffs, even if the necessary improvements are not made to offer a better service.
While in the case of airlines, the most expensive services, apart from the price of fuel and fixed costs, are precisely the airports, said Fernando Gómez, a specialist in the aviation industry.