New tender for Larnaca marina, jetty for Paphos
Transport Minister Marios Demetriades, whose remit includes the privatisation of the port of Limassol, that is expected to be managed by new investors during the first half of 2016, said that the tender for the Larnaca port and marina venture will be reissued within the first quarter of next year.
Speaking during a hearing of the House Transport Committee, the Minister said that his department is reviewing the possibility of splitting the tender into two – one for the commercial and cruise port, and another for the marina and onshore resort.
He said that bids will be requested by the end of the month for consultants on the matter.
Demetriades said that the advisors’ main focus will be the resort and commercial development of the land, totaling about 200,000 sq.m., and will decide whether the port and marina projects will be tendered separately or together.
The chosen bidder Zenon
Consortium, comprising the Lefkaritis-Petrolina Group, Iacovou Construction, the Larnaca Chamber of Commerce and other investors, abandoned the project in July, budgeted at EUR 700 mln, due to insufficient funding following the financial crisis of 2013 that put an end to all major projects on the island.
Further renegotiations to improve the conditions for Zenon to maintain the project also proved unsuccessful.
Meanwhile, addressing the same parliamentary meeting, Demetriades said that there was interest for the development of a cruise jetty at Paphos harbour, but that the state could not afford to go it alone.
He said that there was growing demand from cruise operators and from local hoteliers to offer the shuttle boat facility, but that this was not viable for the cash-strapped government, as the jetty would cost EUR 7 mln and further 10 mln was needed to operate it and to buy the shuttle vessels to carry the passengers to and from the cruise ships.
Instead, he suggested, the government is prepared to sub-contract the project to private operators and that “we may also be ready to provide some financial assistance to make it viable.”