Greek property developer Lamda says it is ready to get on with plans to develop the disused Elliniko airport site, south of Athens, provided that the country's left-led government shows the necessary political will to see the project through.
“The investment must, within the confines of the law, be combined with the necessary political will that translates words into action,” Odysseas Athanasiou, chief executive of Lamda, said late Thursday.
Earlier this month, the company warned that the future of the project was in doubt due to a series of obstacles thrown up by government officials. It said that conditions set out by the country’s culture ministry effectively annulled an agreement between the company and the government which has been approved by Parliament.
A presidential decree meant to deal with many of these issues has been sent to the Council of State for approval.
“Elliniko is something more than an investment; it is a landmark project and we do not want to engage in PR stunts. We wanted to give the Greek state some time and space for maneuver,” Athanasiou said.
Backed by Chinese and Gulf funds, Lamda submitted an 8 billion euro proposal in July to transform 620 hectares of wasteland into a complex of luxury residences, hotels, a yachting marina and casinos.
Progress on the project is being watched by the country’s international lenders as a test of its commitment to privatization under the so-called memorandum agreement.