03 Mei 2015

[030515.EN.BIZ] Leftist Greece State Mulls U-turn On Selling Majority Stakes In Major Ports

THE Greek government is considering selling stakes in its two largest ports in hopes of satisfying lenders enough to unlock bailout funds they are withholding, Reuters reports.

The recently elected leftist government, defiantly dismissed such approaches before, calling it a "crime" to sell off strategic national assets.

But now that the International Monetary Fund is offering no concessions, insisting that austerity measures be taken before bailout funds are released, Athens has relented.

"The negotiating team wants a deal with lenders and we are willing to sell Piraeus and Thessaloniki ports, 51 per cent stakes," a government official told reporters. Cosco Pacific is the major terminal operator in Piraeus.

"This has not been decided but in order to reach a deal we may do it," said the official.

Cut off from markets and fast running out of cash to pay salaries, service loans and redeem maturing debt, Athens has only days left to reach a cash-for-reforms deal.

Source : HKSG.

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