In­ter­est in Greece as in­vest­ment desti­na­tion is start­ing to mount

Kathimerini English - - Front Page - BY DIM­I­TRA MANIFAVA

Funds fromthe United Arab Emi­rates and Qatar are seek­ing ways to get in­volved in fund­ing Greek small and medium-sized en­ter­prises, as for­eign in­ter­est in in­vest­ing in Greece is grow­ing on a num­ber of fronts.

Ac­cord­ing to a se­nior De­vel­op­ment Min­istry of­fi­cial, rep­re­sen­ta­tives of the In­vest­ment Cor­po­ra­tion of Dubai (ICD) re­cently vis­ited the heads of Greece’s four sys­temic banks to dis­cuss ways of in­vest­ing in cor­po­rate loans adding up to 700 mil­lion eu­ros.

At the same time Qatar re­mains in­ter­ested in in­vest­ing 1 bil­lion eu­ros in the Hel­lenic In­vest­ment Fund, as ev­i­denced by the fact that its gov­ern­ment has sent Athens a se­ries of let­ters con­tain­ing ques­tions on tech­ni­cal mat­ters. The law for the foun­da­tion of the in­vest­ment fund was voted on in the last few days of 2013 and the process for its or­ga­ni­za­tion and op­er­a­tion is al­ready un­der way.

The in­vest­ments of Chi­nese groups in Pi­raeus are at a much more ad­vanced stage. Chi­nese telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions gi­ant ZTE is set to launch the pi­lot op­er­a­tion of its lo­gis­tics center early

of the casino at Par­nitha could be trans­ferred to Elliniko should the gov­ern­ment de­cide to al­low for the cre­ation of a casino on the plot of the old Athens air­port that is up for sale. next month, ahead of its of­fi­cial inau­gu­ra­tion on Fe­bru­ary 20.

To­day or tomorrow state pri­va­ti­za­tion fund TAIPED’s gov­ern­ing board is ex­pected to is­sue its ap­proval of the text of the con­tract con­cern­ing the sale of the for­mer air­port plot at Elliniko in south­ern Athens. The draft con­tract will then be for­warded to the three in­ter­ested par­ties as an in­vi­ta­tion for their bind­ing bids. The fi­nal con­tract be­tween the win­ning pri­vate con­sor­tium and TAIPED will also be signed by the Greek state, and it is ex­pected to bring about in­vest­ments to­tal­ing be­tween 5 and 8 bil­lion eu­ros, while di­rect or in­di­rect job cre­ation at the site in south­ern Athens is ex­pected to amount to 8,000-10,000.

Yes­ter­day a gov­ern­ment of­fi­cial fa­mil­iar with the mat­ter did not rule out the pos­si­bil­ity of a casino be­ing opened on the Elliniko site, al­though it is not yet known whether a new li­cense would be is­sued or the li­cense of the Par­nitha casino would be trans­ferred to it. If it emerges that there are plans for a casino at Elliniko, an ad­di­tional price will be ne­go­ti­ated and a sep­a­rate in­vestor could be found.

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