The government of Greece has invited China’s Cosco Group, Maersk Group’s APM Terminals, and Philippines-based International Container Terminal Services (ICTSI) to present their bids for a 51% stake in the Piraeus port, Reuters reports.
The companies are to present their bids by September, with an option for the stake to increase up to 67% if the chosen company invests EUR 300 million in the port over a period of five years, Reuters reported a privatisation officer as saying.
The previous government led by Antonis Samaras had shortlisted five companies, including Cosco, for a 67% stake in the port, but the sale was scrapped by the newly elected leftist government led by Syriza’s Alexis Tsipras.
The Syriza government took office in January partly on the promise to end austerity measures and stop a number of privatisations, including the sale of the 67% stake in the port.
But faced with the increasing pressure from the European Union and the International Monetary Fund, the Syriza government has recently started going back on their pre-election promises, including the sale of the majority stake at Piraeus, in order to renegotiate a EUR 240 billion bailout programme.
World Maritime News Staff