Monday, October 19, 2015

Greece open for business, head of privatisation programme says

by Kerin Hope

Financial Times

October 19, 2015

Disputes among hard-left cabinet ministers and lingering concerns about Greece’s future in the eurozone have not made it any easier to sell Greek assets to foreign investors.

Still, such distractions have not dented Stergios Pitsiorlas’s hopes of wrapping up three key infrastructure sales potentially worth billions of euros by early next year.

The chairman of Greece’s privatisation agency, the Hellenic Asset Development Fund, (Taiped) insists that deals involving ports, railways and airports that were frozen when the leftwing Syriza government took over in January are now back on track.

“These are transactions that are going to have a big economic impact. When they’re completed the Greek economy will present a very different picture,” Mr Pitsiorlas said in an interview.

Greece committed to privatising €50bn in state-owned assets to help repay its debts when it accepted its first international bailout in 2010. Yet the programme has so far been a mess. Cash proceeds last year came to just €530m.


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