Greek interest in Dubai Maritime City

Greek shipowners as well as the Greek government are showing significant interest in Dubai Maritime City, the new shipping complex under construction in the Arab emirate, a top official of the company said yesterday in Athens. Speaking to Kathimerini English Edition, John Ewing, the chief commercial officer at Dubai Maritime City, said Greeks in the sector realize that the project «can add value to their industry by setting up operations or a branch office at the complex. Everybody is interested, they think it is a very dynamic idea.» «We have had meetings with key players of the Greek shipping industry and there is interest there,» said Ewing. «We have also been working with the merchant marine minister; we have had close cooperation with him as we are trying to give more value to the Greek industry; we believe we have a role to play,» he stated. DMC has heard and adopted some of the ideas put to it by Greeks, such as the incorporation in the project of something similar to the Baltic Exchange, a marketplace for shipbrokers and charterers, according to the company’s CCO. Ewing, a US national, accepts that the 2.27-square-kilometer project on a man-made peninsula was «a logistical challenge,» but the support of the government of Dubai, the owner of DMC, has cleared all hurdles for the project’s eventual completion. «There were no real issues, so we are right on target in terms of dates; Dubai altogether is like a corporation,» he explained. The project is already 60 percent complete and its industrial complex can begin operating as early as next year. «The planned completion date is 2012, but we can start operating the DMC academic campus by 2009-2010,» he said speaking on the sidelines of the Posidonia 2008 exhibition at the Hellenikon Exhibition Center in southern Athens. The event continues until Friday.