Gov’t wants to move privatizations goalposts

Gov’t wants to move privatizations goalposts

Stergios Pitsiorlas, the chairman of sell-off fund TAIPED, revealed on Tuesday that the government and the country’s creditors are discussing a one-year extension to the 2018 deadline for revenues of 6.4 billion euros from privatizations, while Shipping Minister Theodoros Dritsas reported problems in the talks on the creation of a Piraeus port watchdog that the ministry is promoting.

In statements to Reuters, Pitsiorlas said Athens wants the target date for the sum of 6.4 billion euros to be moved to the end of 2019, and that an extension was granted to the tender for the Thessaloniki Port Authority (OLTH) as the deadline for the submission of binding bids is now the end of July.

When asked by Kathimerini about the issue of OLTH’s concession to TAIPED for utilization – which is necessary for the tender to proceed – Dritsas responded that the ministries of Shipping and Finance will discuss it with OLTH in the next few day. He also said the amount of money the preferred bidder will have to invest in the country’s second port have not yet been determined, but candidate investors have made their displeasure known about plans for a 200-million-euro obligation.

Dritsas further stated that the bill on the Public Authority for Piraeus Port, which the market views as a form of state intervention, will have been completed in the next 10 days. However, he conceded that there are several matters that remain open on this bill in the talks with the creditors. As for the Piraeus Port Authority concession contract, it should reach Parliament in May for the necessary approval for the completion of the transaction, he said.

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