Greece doubles down on building Chinese cooperation in Piraeus port
THE Athens Stock Exchange-listed Piraeus Port Authority's (PPA) US$648 million investment plan is moving all ahead full, Greek Shipping Minister Ioannis Plakiotakis assured an investment forum, reported Colchester's Seatrade Maritime News
THE Athens Stock Exchange-listed Piraeus Port Authority's (PPA) US$648 million investment plan is moving all ahead full, Greek Shipping Minister Ioannis Plakiotakis assured an investment forum, reported Colchester's Seatrade Maritime News.
'The Chinese investment at Piraeus is a strategic investment, which can help the local economy and society. It is a win-win case. We must move forward based on the plan. We should send the message that we are returning to normalcy and investments are progressing smoothly,' said Mr Plakiotakis.
Though in the grip of the Covid-19 pandemic, the number of containers being handled in Piraeus is holding up, with only a small decline recorded in April year on year, said the report.
Said Greek Development Minister Adonis Georgiadis: 'We continue even faster and stronger than before to make our ties stronger. We are very happy with the Chinese presence in Greece, very proud of our cooperation in Piraeus port.'
Greece is determined to build on the success of the Chinese presence in Piraeus port, with the Greek government continuing with unfaltering commitment to enhance cooperation with China, Mr Georgiadis told the online forum.
The port is considered a flagship success of China's Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). Cosco acquired a majority stake in the listed PPA in 2016 while its subsidiary Piraeus Container Terminal SA has operated the port's container terminals II and III over the past decade, with both posting impressive results..
Mr Georgiadis said Greece is one of China's real friends as he invited Chinese investors as well as tourists to his country. 'In this global crisis of the novel coronavirus, we choose as our common response the further strengthening of Greek-Chinese relations and bilateral cooperation, especially in economy and investments,' he said.
Zhang Qiyue, China's Ambassador to Greece, told the investment forum that China and Greece are important Belt and Road partners. After the pandemic, Sino-Greek relationship is bound to become stronger, she said, adding that the two sides have a very strong desire to further strengthen cooperation.