BUSINESS

Privatization projects could be delayed further

ILIAS BELLOS

TAGS: Economy, Privatizations

Foreign investment companies and Greek market sources are worried that the privatizations program and its anticipated revenues could go off track, as the country’s de facto entry into an election period of unspecified duration, combined with the government’s marginal parliamentary majority, will likely lead to a selective tabling of bills.

Furthermore, ministerial decisions of high political sensitivity, such as the development of the old Athens airport plot at Elliniko and the concessions of the Egnatia Odos highway and regional ports, may be delayed so as to ease the local political impact, according to those same concerns.

One example cited widely in the Greek market is the master plan for the city of Piraeus, which is linked to the implementation of investment obligations by Cosco based on the Piraeus Port Authority’s privatization. The Chinese group’s master plan was submitted months ago, but it has not been approved for reasons related to local business, social, labor and municipal entities.

Another pending issue is the Shipping Ministry bill on the concession of 10 regional ports and the utilization of part or all of their activities; talks have been ongoing for months but have run into local vested interests.

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