Two Chinese officials will be in Piraeus on Monday to sign a cooperation memorandum between Piraeus Port Authority (OLP), its owner Cosco, and the port of Shanghai, concerning the increase in incoming cargo from China to Europe.
The deal will be signed by China Cosco Shipping Corporation Limited head Xu Lirong and the Shanghai International Port Group (SIPG) chairman Chen Xuyuan.
Their arrival in Greece and the signing of the deal highlight the significance of Piraeus for Beijing’s “Belt and Road” initiative, as spelled out by one of the two official documents to be signed on Monday.
The other document will be signed by Athanasios Liagos, a senior OLP official, and by SIPG’s Chen. It will concern cooperation on funding and port works, and on programs for training, technical assistance and information exchange. Crucially, it consolidates the joint planning for promotion campaigns “toward strengthening the use of the two ports that could lead to a greater utilization of cargo handling, trade and business opportunities for both ports,” according to the Chinese.
The two sides will seek to “explore more business opportunities and be able to jointly negotiate with shipping companies on the increase of regular routes linking Shanghai with Piraeus.”