ECONOMY

TAIPED cannot expect any more than 1.3 bln euros this year

State privatization fund TAIPED is further lowering its target for this year’s revenues from the utilization of public assets, as despite favorable developments in the cases of the OPAP gaming company and state lotteries, the fund is not expected to collect more than 1.3 billion euros in 2013, which may well drop to just 1.1 billion by the end of the year.

The reason TAIPED is lowering the target lies in the prospect of missing out on other revenue sources than just Public Gas Corporation (DEPA), such as the gas transmission network operator (DESFA). The revenues TAIPED stands to get from DESFA amount to 187 million euros, but this is not expected to be collected before the first quarter of 2014, and quite possibly later, as both the Greek side and the buyer, Azeri company Socar, are awaiting the European Commission’s verdict on the transaction that is set to take some time.

Greece’s creditors are aware of the revenue shortfall issue. TAIPED has informed the representatives of the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund – known collectively as the troika – about the course of the revenues anticipated as well as the next moves planned for the privatizations program.

A key factor for the final level of TAIPED revenues this year will be the sale and leaseback of 28 buildings and the concession contract for the Astir Palace Hotel at Vouliagmeni, southern Athens. As things stand it is highly unlikely these two projects will get to bring any money into TAIPED’s coffers before the year expires.

The sale and leaseback project is stuck on the simple problem that there are no tenants for all 28 buildings. Market experts say that it is this project which will determine whether the TAIPED revenues will stay at 1.1 billion euros this year or climb to 1.3 billion.

The revenues that are certain for this year are those concerning the sale of 33 percent of OPAP (622 million euros), the concession of the license to operate Greece’s state lotteries for the next 12 years (190 million euros), the sale of stocks of banks, OPAP etc (30 million euros), and the sale and concession of real estate properties (88 million euros).