Rio de Janeiro, Nov 3: Delays in Brazilian airport upgrades for next year’s football World Cup are the fault of “bad engineers”, according to a government minister.
Local media reported Saturday that six of the 12 airports earmarked for redevelopment in 2011 are yet to reach 50 percent completion, reports Xinhua.
“The delays are not the result of a lack of funds or desire,” civil aviation minister Wellington Moreira Franco said.
“The projects which we have agreed to execute are very bad. We’ve had to start them all over again.”
Brazil’s World Cup preparations have been beset by construction bottlenecks and reports of cost overruns.
At least one of the tournament’s six unfinished stadiums is set to miss the December construction deadline set by football’s world governing body FIFA.
The government last month said Arena Pantanal en Cuiaba is unlikely to be ready until mid January while concern also surrounds Curitiba’s Arena da Baixada and Arena Amazonia in Manaus.
According to Franco, Brazil is suffering from an acute skilled labour shortage.
“We have a generation of engineers from the 1970s and 80s that left university and went straight into the finance sector,” he said.
“That has led to a shortage of experienced and qualified professionals in the area. Youngsters who have university degrees now are not up to the standard needed and the projects are really bad. Companies are having great difficulties trying to overcome this.”
Infraero, the public company charged with operating Brazil’s airports, has guaranteed all redevelopment work will be completed by next June.
More than 600,000 international tourists are expected to visit Brazil during the June 12-July 13 tournament.