CHINA Cosco Holdings is to invest US$552 million in the Greek Port of Piraeus over the next five years, with a focus on the container and cruise market, said company president Xu Lirong.
Cosco investment is also to be spent on the port's shipbuilding sector, reported New York-based China Topix (Yibada Co). The company said it aims to make Piraeus "the biggest transit port in the Mediterranean," Mr Xu was reported saying in a meeting with Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras in Shanghai.
Aside from improving the cruise industry and shipyard sector, Cosco also plans to boost the port's terminal capacity to 20,000 vehicles and increase its annual volume of containers from 4.3 million TEU to seven million TEU, reported Colchester's Seatrade Maritime.
The Greek prime minister's official five-day visit to Beijing and Shanghai comes after the country's parliament approved the sale of a majority of Piraeus's stake to Cosco.
"Greece, which is the first stop on China's way to Europe, can become a bridge between China and the West, between Asia and Europe," said Mr Xu.
The recent deal allows Cosco to own a 67 per cent stake in Piraeus. Under the agreement, Cosco would initially buy 51 per cent stake of Piraeus for US$310 million and then an additional 16 per cent for $97.4 million after a five-year period, Reuters reported.
Source : HKSG.