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Ios Island Waterway Permit for Seaplane Flights a Done Deal

The Greek island of Ios is moving ahead with the creation of its own waterway after the finalization of the licensing process by Deputy Transport Minister Yiannis Kefalogiannis.

The permit has been granted to the Municipal Port Authority which has named Water Airports (Ellinika Ydatodromia) as the concessionaire for the project.

The South Aegean Region is aiming to establish 30 seaplane ports on a number of its islands in the Cyclades and the Dodecanese. The news comes after an announcement on Thursday that the Central Greece port city of Volos has also been granted a waterway license.

Island authorities and tourism stakeholders are pinning their hopes on the extended waterway network which they say will provide tourists and locals with a flexible and safe transport option to the islands.

Ios Mayor Gikas Gikas referred to importance of the project, which he says will ensure year-round access to the islands for locals and travelers, and create new jobs.

“The licensing of the Ios waterway paves the way for a revolutionary gateway to our island that will play a key role in the development of quality tourism but also facilitate the movement of permanent Ios residents to major urban and regional centers on a 12-month basis,” he said.

Ios Island Cyclades Greece

Ios Island Cyclades Greece © Maria Theofanopoulou

Referring to the flexibility of transport by seaplane, Water Airports SA Founder and President Tasos Govas said waterways are particularly ideal for islands without airport facilities. The versatility of seaplane travel will enhance the island’s transport services significantly improving local economies and the quality of life of their inhabitants, he said.

“It will also increase the range of combined transport [options] so that in cooperation with ferry services providers and airlines will ensure the optimal services for tourists and permanent residents,” Govas said.

Earlier this year, the Greek government said it was moving swiftly ahead with the licensing and construction of 150 waterways, which it hopes to have up and running in the next five years.

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