Greece fast-tracks Cretan holiday resort, UK investor says

A project to build a holiday 300-million-euro holiday resort in northeastern Crete has been fast-tracked by the Greek government, according to the Glasgow-based company behind the scheme.

Minoan Group, which is hoping to build a luxury complex with up to 2,000 beds, released a statement saying that the project will go ahead. It had been held up for many months amid protests by locals and environmental groups.

However, the government began singling out a number of projects for the fast-track process, which cuts down on red tape and the time needed to get the schemes under way.

?We are delighted that the Greek government has granted our Crete project fast-track status,? said Minoan chairman Christopher Egleton. ?It is definitely the most significant step yet in terms of bringing the project to fruition and demonstrates the Greek government?s support for what is now recognised as a strategic investment for the country, one which we believe will yield significant economic benefits including the creation of approximately 1,200 jobs.?

The project will cover 2,500 hectares and will include a golf course. The Council of State had blocked the scheme with a decision in December 2010.

?We are particularly grateful to the Greek Government for its efficient handling of this process, which has allowed us to cooperate effectively in addressing any issues as they have arisen,? added Egleton. ?The new investment legal framework is designed to attract necessary foreign direct investment, like the project, to the country.?

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