Peru's president-elect Pedro Pablo Kuczynski, who is scheduled to take office July 28, met for talks with UN Development Programme representatives in Lima to discuss infrastructure financing, according to state news agency Andina.

Kuczynski, who won the June 5 presidential election, also met with representatives of the construction industry group Capeco, the civil construction federation and the professional colleges of civil engineers and architects. He did not disclose details of the discussions.

"I want Peru to become a construction camp," Kuczynski told reporters in Lima. "We have a long list of big and small projects such as dams, schools, police stations, the railway on Lima's outskirts, and highways."

Kuczynski has pledged to fast-track 15-20 delayed infrastructure projects totaling US$18bn in investment, including line No. 2 of the Lima metro, the southern Peruvian natural gas pipeline, the Lima and Chinchero airports and the Lima-Ica highway.

While President Ollanta Humala has awarded a record US$20bn in public-private infrastructure concessions since 2011, tens of billions of dollars in infrastructure, mining and energy projects have been held up by permitting delays, according to industry associations such as Confiep and AFIN.

Kuczynski added he plans to complete by July 10 the selection of his 19-member cabinet, including the transport, construction and energy ministers. Fernando Zavala, CEO of SAB Miller's Peruvian brewery, is widely expected to be named as cabinet chief.

Zavala, 45, is an economist who holds an MBA from the UK's Birmingham University and who succeeded Kuczynski as finance minister in 2005 when the now president-elect went on to head then-president Alejandro Toledo's cabinet. Kuczynski has already picked former JPMorgan investment banker and World Bank economist Alfredo Thorne as his finance minister.

In 2005-06, former CS First Boston banker Kuczynski and Zavala teamed up to prepay Peru's foreign debt to the Paris Club, a group of 19 creditor countries, launched Peru's first Eurobond sale and secured sovereign rating upgrades from Standard & Poor's and Fitch.


Source: BNamericas