ECONOMY

TAIPED tries to speed up sale of Thessaloniki port authority

The government’s privatization agency, TAIPED, is reportedly trying to expedite the sale of Thessaloniki Port Authority (OLTH) so that it can be combined with that of Hellenic Railways’ operating company, Trainose.

Officials argue that the combination may prove a catalyst for success, raising the value of both assets and the revenues to accrue. As Thessaloniki port cannot compete with that of Piraeus in the internal market, they note, many investors see it as a gateway for cargoes destined for the Balkans and Eastern Europe, but for this it would need the support of a rail operator.

The privatization of Trainose has already been initiated and so the two may be combined to best effect. TAIPED favors the method of issuing shares for the privatization of the two ports but their managements and various political interests are lobbying for the concessions model. Tenders are expected for a broad number of other public real estate assets.