Africa and Latin America drive strong 2022 for Mota-Engil

By Neil Gerrard01 March 2023

Mota-Engil’s projects in Africa and Latin America helped to drive a 47% increase in turnover and 31% jump in profit in 2022.

A pink building bearing Mota-Engil's logo against a blue sky Mota-Engil reported a strong increase in sales in Latin America, driven by rail projects in Mexico (Image: Mota-Engil)

The construction company, which is based in Portugal and part-owned by China Communications Construction Company (CCCC) saw turnover rise to €3.8 billion (US$4.1 billion) in 2022, from €2.6 billion the year before. Earnings before interest, taxation, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) were €541 million, up 31% on 2021’s figure of €412 million.

Net profit rose to €77 million, up 22% on 2021.

A series of large project wins in Angola, Mexico and Colombia, contributed to a record backlog of work, totalling €12.6 billion as of December 2022.

That was up year on year from €7.6 billion.

Mexico accounted for the largest share of the backlog at 30% of the total, followed by Angola (16%) and Nigeria (13%).

The business made a slim net profit margin of 1.1% in 2022, although that was an improvement on the 0.9% it made in 2021. It is targeting a net margin of 3% by 2026.


In Europe, Portugal accounted for the lion’s share (72%) of Mota-Engil’s turnover, which was €510 million in 2022.

It has a high-speed train project and metro expansion works in the pipeline, which contributed to a €907 million backlog.

But there was a 30% year-on-year drop in its activity in Poland. The company said it was pursuing a more selective bidding strategy, related to the conflict in Ukraine.


In Africa, turnover increase 44% year on year to €1.2 billion, of which 51% came from Angola, Mozambique and Nigeria.

Mining operations for commodities like coal, zinc, gold and diamonds accounted for 31% of turnover.

The company saw its backlog increase by 39% to €6.4 billion, of which €2 billion is in Angola and €1.6 billion in Nigeria.

Major projects awarded in 2022 and due to start soon include the Lobito Corridor in Angola.

The project involves an agreement for the concession of rail services and logistical support in the Lobito Corridor between Mota-Engil Africa, Singapore-based Trafigura, and Belgian rail firm Vecturis.

Latin America

In Latin America, Mota-Engil predicted record revenues over the next couple of years, as large projects such as the Maya Train project in Mexico, the construction of three lines of the Monterrey subway system in Mexico, and the Medellin railway in Colombia.

Turnover in the region rose 145% year on year to €1.5 billion. Rail projects were the biggest driver, accounting for €1.2 billion of revenue. EBITDA reached €146 million, up 61% year on year.

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