BUENOS AIRES May 11 Avianca has
received a 15-year concession to operate in Argentina, according
to a notice in the government's official gazette on Thursday,
after a probe of a possible conflict of interest involving the
airline and President Mauricio Macri.
In March an investigation was opened into whether Macri had
favored the Colombia airline in a plan to open more routes. His
father's company sold another airline to Avianca last year.
Argentina's Anti-corruption Office, known by its Spanish
initials OA, said this week that it had found no conflict of
"The concession is for 15 years," according to the gazette.
Macri, elected in 2015 on promises of attracting much-needed
investment in Argentina, wants a more competitive airline market
to help drive down the cost of doing business in the country.
The president, scion of one of Argentina's richest families,
was also criticized earlier this year over a deal his government
reached to resolve a 15-year old debt the postal service
incurred when it was owned by his father. Prosecutors claimed
the deal benefited his family.
Macri said the deal was legal but revoked it anyway and
apologized for a lack of transparency.
(Reporting by Hernan Nessi; Writing by Hugh Bronstein; Editing
by Paul Simao)