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Friday, 28 November 2014

Piraeus Port Authority approves €230m Chinese investment

Authorities at the Greek port of Piraeus have approved an agreement with terminal operator Cosco Pacific which paves the way for a €230 million investment from Chinese investors. The deal had been long delayed following opposition from unions.

"A significant development project with cost € 230 million with concession contract signed today, making Piraeus, one of the most modern and big freight ports of Europe,” Yiorgos Anomeritis, managing director of the Piraeus Port Authority (PPA) said.

Development work will expand capacity of piers II and III at the port to 6.2 million TEUs annually from 3.7 million. The investment is part of a strategic $40 billion spend by Beijing aimed at strengthening ‘Silk Road’ links from Asia through Southeastern Europe.

Investment vital to Greek recovery

Despite complaints from unions that Cosco’s parent company is not currently paying rent for the eastern part of terminal III, the investment has been viewed of strategic importance both by Chinese and European authorities.

“The biggest issue in the country is to develop,” Anomeritis added. “It is the basic parameter that can give vent, along with other management, to the public debt problem. And only on the issue of development deserves all political and economic factors of the country to sit at the same table in order to achieve fast pace and yields

Upgrade work is also planned to improve infrastructure and rail links between Piraeus and European destinations such as Austria, Hungary, the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

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