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Waterways in Greece Get ‘Green’ Light, Move to Next Phase

The waterway on Paxoi (photo) is the most recent project to receive relevant environmental licensing, according to Water Airports, the company which operates the waterway on Corfu.

The waterway on Paxoi (photo) is the most recent project to receive relevant environmental licensing, according to Water Airports, the company which operates the waterway on Corfu.

The waterway projects at four Greek destinations have received relevant environmental licensing and can now move to the next phase of completion while the government explores ways to incorporate the projects into the country’s “Fast Track” law, which accelerates the licensing procedures for private-public investments.

The projects on Skyros, Alonissos, Paxoi and in Agia Marina, Grammatiko, have received environmental authorization. Next to follow are those in Thessaloniki, Volos, Skopelos, Rethymno and Heraklion, according to Environment Minister Panagiotis Skourletis.

Insiders, however, are expressing their concerns over the government’s political will to push ahead with a legal framework that would condense the licensing procedure into a single stage (one license for the establishment of facilities, operation and exploitation). In order for a basic waterway network to be up-and running and fully operational this summer, authorization procedures must be accelerated and concurrent, they say.

The government through the infrastructure ministry has repeatedly said that it would be preparing a new draft law in this direction. In the meantime, over 50 applications for waterways are said to be awaiting approval.

Thus far, the only waterway in Greece holding an official license is on Corfu, under the management of Water Airports.

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