Regarding the electoral processes that are coming, Manuel Manrique pointed out that "they must be viewed normally within a country scheme that offers market certainty."
How is the health crisis affecting the infrastructure sector?
This is a complex time for everyone, but I believe that, by taking the appropriate measures, we will be able to control the virus; that also depends on the responsibility of each one of us.
The effect on the infrastructure sector has been different in each country. In Chile, work on the large projects that are strategic for the country has continued, with very strict health measures to avoid contagion among our collaborators, which has sometimes meant a decrease in the pace of work. In general, the impact has not been very significant.
In infrastructure, public-private collaboration is essential. Do you expect investment in the construction of hospitals to increase in Chile and Spain?
In both countries, public-private hospital projects should increase. The concessions system is recognized as a successful public policy that has made great contributions to Chile’s development and has also been the model that other countries have followed to develop their infrastructure.
In the case of hospitals, it is fundamental for two reasons: the first is a strictly health reason in that hospitals are necessary to address this crisis in which there may be future outbreaks, and the second reason is economic because this model frees public resources for increasing the staffing of health services, for example.
Spanish companies are world leaders on concessions but, in Latin America, are losing ground to Chinese companies. What are you doing to compete with China?
Companies like Sacyr have a long-term commitment in Latin America. We have implemented key emblematic projects that testify to our excellence and innovation. For decades, we have also been demonstrating that we are part of each country, with a fully local staff. Our view is that all the people who work with us should have an attractive long-term professional and personal project. I think our best competitive card is the guarantee we give of our commitment to a country in all circumstances.
How do you think Chile’s electoral processes and the pandemic could affect foreign investment?
This health crisis is global and I am sure that Chile will soon overcome it. Your Finance Minister, Ignacio Briones, has already said that the situation is a very complex, but transitory. Chile is a country with very solid structural economic and political elements and, therefore, a safe country in which to invest. This institutional quality also applies to the upcoming electoral processes. They should be viewed as something normal in the context of a country that offers market certainty.
For this reason, we trust that the Economic Reactivation Plan that has been announced, of which infrastructure development is a key pillar, will be implemented quickly and with agility. In other words, powerful public and private investment under the concessions system, which also needs to quickly resume its calendar of tenders.
The technological transformation is creating a revolution in companies’ processes. How is Sacyr reinventing itself to implement innovative solutions in the digital era?
For several years now, Sacyr has been engaged in a deep process of digital transformation, thanks to which our people have been able to work remotely without any problem. We are currently implementing various internal digitalization processes that make us more efficient in, for example, administrative tasks and the management of knowledge. We also have several lines of collaboration with innovative external agents through which to apply new solutions that incorporate technology into our production processes. At Sacyr, all our digitalization processes are designed to improve our service to clients.
Source: Fundación Chile-España.