Port, Elliniko, regional airports to be fast-tracked by TAIPED
The Hellenic Republic Asset Development Fund (TAIPED) has said that three major privatization projects and several smaller ones are being fast-tracked by the government. The goal is to set the process in motion by October this year, subject to the government and its creditors completing all planned parliamentary and other procedures, and barring additional delays such as early elections.
TAIPED is in charge of proceeding with all privatization tenders that were in its portfolio as of December 31, 2014. As agreed between Greece and its creditors, the new 50-billion-euro fund will be established in the next few months and will include real estate, public participation and concession rights.
By October, the government is required to recommend an independent task force in cooperation with the European Union, which will initiate the structure and governance of the new fund. Proposals for this must be submitted by December with a view for the fund to be operational by March 2016 in agreement between the Greek government and the institutions.
The first privatizations involve Piraeus Port Authority (OLP), the Elliniko development project and 14 regional airports. Also on the list are the privatization of the Hellenic Gas Transmission System Operator Administrator (DESFA) and the sale of the remaining 10 percent publicly owned share of OTE telecom. DESFA will allocate 17 percent ownership to third-party investors who have already been identified, while Azerbaijan’s Socar will reduce its ownership from 66 to 49 percent. Privatization or other measures that will make the Independent Power Transmission Operator (ADMIE) completely independent from the Public Power Corporation are also scheduled for the autumn.
Next in line are 10 regional ports and marinas of international interest, the Greek postal service ELTA, Egnatia Odos (which manages the Egantia Highway), state involvement in Athens International Airport, around 10,000 properties and the rights for the nearly depleted offshore gas fields in south Kavala.
Of the 50 billion euros that TAIPED is expected to raise, 50 percent will be used to recapitalize Greek banks, 12.5 billion euros will fund development and the remaining 12.5 billion euros will be used for debt repayment.
Elliniko, on the south coast of Athens, was the site of the city’s airport until 2001. It was utilized for numerous sporting events during the 2004 Olympics but has been used only sporadically since then.