Aiming to attract investors with specialized know-how and at the same time ensuring the public’s best interests, Greece’s parliament approved this week a bill tabled by the shipping ministry which paves the way for public-private partnerships (PPPs) and sub-concessions for the commercial exploitation of 10 Greek ports.
More specifically, the draft foresees that 10 state-owned ports across Greece, namely those of Rafina, Elefsina, Lavrio, Volos, Patra, Igoumenitsa, Alexandroupolis, Irakleio on Crete, Corfu and Kavala, are now open to concessionaires wishing to tap into their potential either through partial concession deals or full management.
The ministry hopes that under the new model, the ports – belonging to Greece’s public assets management fund (TAIPED) – will attract investors who together with the state will create the infrastructure for cruise travel, marinas and shipbuilding repair areas, among others. The concept behind the model is to ensure the most suitable investments are made by concessionaires equipped with the know-how and the will to develop a specific activities.
TAIPED is expected to announce international calls of interest in the coming period.
It should be noted, that the 10 ports will not be sold off, as in the cases of Piraeus and Thessaloniki ports. Instead each port authority will assess and propose which activities should be put to international competition based on port capacity and return on investment.
“The law enables port organizations to attract private investment that will develop activities and attract more investors… this model is applied across Europe,” said Shipping Minister Fotis Kouvelis.
Last year, TAIPED President Aris Xenofos underlined that all 10 ports were free of loan obligations, were not being subsidized by the state, were fully profitable in 2017 and had five-year business plans in place.