- Associated Press - Tuesday, April 22, 2014

ATLANTA (AP) - Atlanta City Council has agreed to establish a five year, $2 million incentive program to help boost international air cargo and passenger services at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, officials said Tuesday.

“With this new incentive program, Hartsfield-Jackson will be better positioned to attract additional passenger and cargo carriers to Atlanta,” the airport’s Interim General Manager Miguel Southwell said in a release.

Southwell added that airport officials are always looking for ways to develop new routes and expand cargo capacity, and he believes the incentive program will boost the city’s global competitiveness.

The incentive program aims to link Atlanta with international cities in countries with rapidly growing economies and air cargo traffic, officials said.

The airport will waive a year’s worth of landing fees for airlines starting new international routes that aren’t already served from Atlanta, and will match up to 50 percent of promotional funding with a cap of $25,000 for new passenger services.

Two-year landing fee waivers will be offered to carriers starting services from Atlanta to Russia, India, China, South Africa and Brazil, airport officials said.

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed and other city representatives visited Brazil in early April for a trade mission focused on expanding the city’s business opportunities in the South American nation.

The incentive program will launch this summer. Airport officials said carriers will qualify for the perks on a first come, first served basis.

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