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"Tourists from Europe are opting to visit cities such as Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo or other municipalities in the northeast that have direct flights," mayor Cesar Souza Junior said in a local government release. "Not even the airport's current upgrade project will solve this issue."
About 30% of the Santa Catarina state capital's GDP comes from tourism, the mayor added.
Privatizing airports is a federal government decision that is made through civil aviation authority SAC. If approved, civil aviation agency ANAC conducts the concession process.
Hercílio Luz airport has a 9,440m2 passenger terminal, a 2,300m and 1,500m runway, and a parking facility for 539 vehicles. It has 14 airplane parking spaces and the capacity to handle 4.1mn passengers per year, according to Infraero.