predecessor agreed to fund a US$24 million cable car
system project that was completed earlier this year.
The system slashes the two-hour drive to the top of
the ruins to a 20-minute ride.
And in order to free up a logjam of stalled projects—and keep backups from occurring in the
future—in November, the government approved a
new public investment system designed to drastically reduce planning and approval time for gov-ernment-sponsored projects. For instance, fewer
studies and less paperwork will be required to
execute regional and municipal projects.
Even before President Kuczynski assumed power,
the government was starting to give Peruvian organizations—or at least Peruvian professionals—the
opportunity to lead projects rather than rely on
foreign contractors, says Julio Alvarez, assistant
manager of engineering, Shougang Hierro Peru,
Marcona, Peru. For instance, a 20-year, US$1.4
billion mine expansion project that was launched
in 2010 is in the hands of Peruvian teams that he
oversees, he says. With President Kuczynski in
charge, government confidence in Peruvian project
leadership is expected to grow, Mr. Alvarez says.
“With a little effort and the trust of the private
company and the government, we have been able to
take this important step forward,” he says. “It’s not
that complicated, really. It’s just about doing things
right and being well-trained.”
Despite the positive project vibes coming from the
government, experienced project professionals know
Lima, Peru. Project professionals must be better
prepared to manage stakeholders and mitigate risks,
such as a history of government inertia that has
delayed or even derailed projects.
“If projects are better planned and better controlled, in the end, more projects will be possible,”
Mr. Claros says.
The situation in Peru is by no means dire. The country’s GDP growth rate is projected to reach 3. 5 percent this year, one of the highest in a region where
overall growth was negative. But growth isn’t likely
to even approach the all-time high of 9. 1 percent
set in 2008 unless Peru cultivates sectors beyond
mining. For instance, double-digit growth in the
construction industry ended in 2014, and private
investments in the sector continue to lag.
“Many of the companies we compete with have
gone out of business or are laying people off,” says
Mr. Claros. “When it comes to projects in recent
years, everyone has suffered.”
President Kuczynski says he’ll help by increasing
government spending and wooing foreign investors
to finance the country’s glaring infrastructure gap.
Peru is in need of nearly US$160 billion in infrastructure projects through 2025, according to a study by
the School of Public Management at Universidad
del Pacífico, for the Association for the Promotion
of National Infrastructure. And the government
has pledged to spend US$3.1 billion this year on
telecommunications and transportation infrastructure. Already, PPPs are helping to build new roads,
including a 3,503-kilometer ( 2,177-mile) highway to
connect villages and cities in the Andes Mountains.
The president also has focused on Peru’s tourism
sector—setting a goal to double the number of people who visit Peru each year to 7 million by the end
of his term. The tourism sector needs new projects
so the Incan ruins at iconic Machu Picchu and
the nearby city of Cusco aren’t the country’s only
main tourist attractions. To spike interest in the
pre-Incan ruins of Kuelap, President Kuczynski’s
the end, more
—Luis Claros, PMI-SP, PMP,
PgMP, PMO3 Ingenieros
Consultores, Lima, Peru