BUSINESS

Mega yacht owners choose Greece for construction and maintenance

ILIAS BELLOS

At least four mega yachts have been at Perama and Elefsina in the last few weeks, such as the 133-meter Al Mirqab (pictured) and the 139-meter Al Salamah, which respectively rank 14th and 11th on the global list.

TAGS: Economy

Few people have seen or even know about the luxury yachts have been choosing the zones of Perama, Elefsina or Halkida for repairs, maintenance or even construction in recent years. These are mega yachts that rank high on the list of the world’s biggest and most luxurious recreational vessels.

At least four such yachts have been at Perama and Elefsina in the last few weeks, such as the 133-meter Al Mirqab and the 139-meter Al Salamah, which respectively rank 14th and 11th on the global list. The world’s 16th biggest yacht, Maryah was entirely built at Elefsina Shipyard in 2014.

Besides the Elefsina facilities, there are several other Greek shipyards being chosen by mega yacht owners for construction or repair and maintenance work: The Halkida Shipyards, the Hellenic Shipyards of Perama, the Spanopoulos Shipyard and the Psarros Shipyard (both at Perama), the PrivatSea Marine Services at Elefsina etc, appear to have obtained a significant share of the Mediterranean market. They attract business of high added value and in turn employ a series of smaller contractors, experts tell Kathimerini.

Emblematic yachts such as those mentioned above, as well as Topaz and Turama – which are sixth and 22nd respectively on the global chart of Boat International – plus hundreds more smaller yachts, including most Greek ones, maintain thousands of jobs in this Greek industry.

Greek marinas are another factor boosting local shipyards: Given that the Greek seas constitute one of the world’s top destinations for yachting, and considering their proximity to the countries of the Persian Gulf, to Russia and to other European countries, choosing Greek marinas as the home of those mega yachts for the best part of the year is becoming increasingly popular.

This is also the reason for growing interest in the privatization of the Alimos marina, in southern Athens, and for the entry of private investors in the nearby Flisvos marina a few years ago.

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