© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Brazil’s Infrastructure Minister Tarcisio Gomes de Freitas attends an interview with Reuters in Brasilia

SAO PAULO (Reuters) – Spanish tourism and transportation company Grupo Globalia will launch a new air carrier in Brazil, Brazilian Infrastructure Minister Tarcísio Gomes de Freitas said in a message posted on Twitter on Saturday.

Globalia owns the Air Europa carrier and companies in the tourism sector, including hotel operators and travel services such as Travelplan and Groundforce.

The Brazilian minister said the decision by Globalia to start air transportation services in Brazil followed a regulatory change allowing foreign companies to control airliners in the country, something not previously possible.

“It is the first airline to decide to operate in Brazil after the new legislation. It will hire people locally and will increase competition in the sector,” said Freitas in his tweet.

Grupo Globalia did not return a request for comment on Saturday.

The new legislation allowing foreign ownership of air carriers still needs a final nod of approval from the Brazilian Congress, something expected to happen in the coming week.

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