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Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Port Of Piraeus News

Greece's Cruise Port Gets EU Extension Grant

Port of Piraeus: Photo credit Wiki CCL

The European Commission has found a €113.9 million Greek support for an infrastructure project of €120 million at the Port of Piraeus to be in line with EU state aid rules. The EU's official gazette 'Europa' reports that the EU Commission found that the project will further the objectives of EU transport policy and cohesion without unduly distorting competition in the internal market. In September 2012 Greece notified plans to support an investment project by OLP, the port authority, to extend existing infrastructure for cruise ships at the Port of Piraeus by 2 docking stations.

China-Greece Port Collaboration Applauded

Greek President Karolos saw successful cooperation with COSCO in the Port of Piraeus as a pointer towards further bilateral collaboration. The Greek president voiced his thoughts during a visit to the Chinese company's Piraeus Container Terminal (PCT) in Athens reports China Daily. Papoulias expressed confidence that with COSCO's success and following Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras' official visit to China two weeks ago, more Chinese companies will come to invest in Greece. Citing statements to Greek news agency AMNA, China Daily reports that Greek Shipping Minister Costis Moussouroulis who accompanied the president on the visit, thought that the company's new investment projects verified the strategic position the port of Piraeus holds in the global sea transport system.

Cosco Wants Controlling Stake Piraeus

Image by: Piraeus Port Authority

Though the new Greece government has canceled the port of Piraeus’s privatization, Chinese group COSCO's interest in expanding its activity in the port remains strong. COSCO was the main suitor for the 67.7 percent stake in Piraeus Port Authority (OLP), which privatization fund TAIPED had planned to sell off. Denmark’s APM Terminals was also trying to get the contract. Chinese group COSCO has had a strong presence over the past five years in the Piraeus port. Its subsidiary Piraeus…

Royal Olympic Announces Delivery of Olympia Explorer

Royal Olympic Cruise Lines Inc. announced that the Olympia Explorer, sister ship to Royal Olympic's Olympia Voyager, is expected to reach the port of Piraeus early 2002, which will enable it to perform new itineraries from Venice to Piraeus, Istanbul and the Greek Islands next summer, with Piraeus as an alternative port of embarkation. Royal Olympic Cruises delegates and representatives from Blohm+Voss Shipyard in Hamburg had a meeting in Piraeus regarding the delivery of the Olympia Explorer, which was due for delivery in April 2001.

Royal Olympic Takes Delivery of Olympia Explorer

Blohm+Voss GMBH delivered of the new fast cruise ship, Olympia Explorer, to Royal Olympic Cruise Lines Inc. The vessel immediately sailed from the Blohm+Voss shipyard to the Port of Piraeus in Greece. The Olympia Explorer, together with her sister ship, Olympia Voyager, are the fastest cruise vessels of their size, performing unique cruises at speeds of up to 30 knots. "The new itineraries Royal Olympic Cruises will offer with this vessel have created considerable interest in the cruise market. The first cruises are already fully booked," added Pantazis. On her maiden voyage on May 3, the Olympia Explorer will start a series of weekly cruises calling at the ports of Piraeus, Corfu, Venice, Dubrovnik, Bari, Katakolon, Istanbul, Mykonos and Santorini.

Seamen’s Union Launches 48 hour Strike in Greece

Inchcape Shipping Services (ISS) advised of 48 hour strike action in Greece by the Seamen’s Union from 0600 on Thursday 31 August until 0600 on Saturday 2 February 2013. ISS Greece has confirmed that the strike disruption means that there will be no assistance by tug boat crews with berthing and sailing movements for vessels calling at the ports of Piraeus, Aspropyrgos, Eleusis and Lavrion and pilots have also confirmed they will be joining the strike from 12.00 until 16.00 on 31st January. Vessel movements at Thessaloniki will not be affected as the local towage company will not be joining the strike. ISS Greece will continue to monitor developments on behalf of ship owners and operators and will keep customers updated.

Greek Seamen’s Union Launches 48 hour Strike

Inchcape Shipping Services (ISS), a  maritime services provider, is advising of 48 hour strike action in Greece by the Seamen’s Union from 0600 on Thursday 31 January until 0600 on Saturday 2 February 2013. ISS Greece has confirmed that the strike disruption means that there will be no assistance by tug boat crews with berthing and sailing movements for vessels calling at the ports of Piraeus, Aspropyrgos, Eleusis and Lavrion and pilots have also confirmed they will be joining the strike from 12.00 until 16.00 on 31st January. Vessel movements at Thessaloniki will not be affected as the local towage company will not be joining the strike. ISS Greece will continue to monitor developments on behalf of ship owners and operators and will keep customers updated.

Maersk Interested in Greek Ports Lined Up for Privatisation

Photo courtesy of Piraeus Port Authority S.A.

APM Terminals, part of A.P. Moller-Maersk, said on Friday it is interested in buying into Greek ports Piraeus and Thessaloniki, slated for privatisation if a new bailout deal is agreed between Athens and the European Union. "Yes, we are interested in the Greek ports of Piraeus and Thessaloniki and are pursuing them as part of our growth plans. Our interest has been consistent throughout the economic and political cycles of the country," Francois Delenclos, Vice President of Business Development at APM Terminals, said. (Reporting by Sabina Zawadzki)

Piraeus Port U-turn Not to Stop China Investment

China Ocean Shipping

Even though Greece's new left-wing government set alarm bells ringing in Beijing when it halted the privatization of the port this week, analysts say Athens is merely posturing, reports South China Morning Post. China will remain as "privileged partner for Greece". Cosco officials in Piraeus and China are playing down concerns over the new government’s plans for the port of Piraeus. When the new Greek Government led by Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras made halting the privatization of the Port of Piraeus one of its first initiatives…

Inchcape Shipping Celebrates 25th Anniversary of ISS Greece

A reception hosted by Group CEO Claus Hyldager was the finale of the ISS annual senior management conference in Athens.

Inchcape Shipping Services (ISS), the world’s leading maritime services provider, has this month celebrated the 25th anniversary of its operations in Greece by hosting its annual senior management conference in Athens, close to the company’s Greek head office in the Port of Piraeus. Over 170 ISS employees, including the entire senior management team, congregated to enjoy three days of strategic development activity, events, networking and customer engagement. The packed three day agenda featured a number of highlights including the announcement of the ISS Employee of the Year 2014…

EU Regulators Order Cosco to Pay for Greek Benefits

Image: Piraeus Container Terminal (PCT)

European Union state aid regulators have ordered Greece to recover certain illegal fiscal benefits granted to Piraeus Container Terminal (PCT) and its parent company Cosco Pacific Ltd, says a report in Reuters. The European Commission found that Greece inappropriately granted tax benefits to Piraeus Container Terminal (PTC) and its parent company Cosco. These include preferential accounting treatment. The money must be paid back to the Greek state. The Commission also said Greek authorities are expected to stop granting these advantages to PTC and Cosco from now on.

Maersk Eyes Greek Ports

Photo: Piraeus Port Authority S.A

APM Terminals, part of A.P. Moller-Maersk, said it is interested in buying into the Greek ports Piraeus and Thessaloniki, slated for privatization if a new bailout deal is agreed between Athens and the European Union, reports Reuters. Maersk will participate in the bidding process for two of the largest Greek ports – Piraeus and Thessaloniki – after the country’s Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras brought the sale of the ports on the table in today’s bailout proposal, Bloomberg reports.

Royal Olympic Cruises Announces Delivery of the Olympia Explorer

Royal Olympic Cruise Lines Inc. announced today that the, Olympia Explorer, sister ship to Royal Olympic’s Olympia Voyager is expected to reach the port of Piraeus early 2002, which will enable her to perform exciting new itineraries from Venice to Piraeus, Istanbul and the Greek Islands next summer, with Piraeus as an alternative port of embarkation. Royal Olympic Cruises delegates and representatives from Blohm+Voss Shipyard in Hamburg had a very constructive meeting in Piraeus regarding the delivery of the Olympia Explorer, which was due for delivery in April 2001. With 28 knots cruising speed, the Olympia Explorer is the only ship…

COSCO Sees Piraeus in Top Thirty by 2018

Photo: Piraeus Port Authority

COSCO Shipping, plans to ramp up container volume at Greece’s biggest port in Piraeus by 35 percent by 2018, the port’s new managing director, Fu Cheng Qiu, said, reports Reuters. China's biggest shipping company, which owns the world's fourth-largest container shipping fleet, bought 51 percent of the port's operating company last month for 280.5 million euros ($315.5 million), one of Greece's biggest and most strategic privatizations since a debt crisis began in 2009. COSCO wants…

China's Acquisition of Piraeus Port a Booster for Greek Economy?

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras(1st L) meets with China COSCO Shipping Chairman Xu Lirong(2nd R) . Photo: Xinhua

Greece has formally signed an agreement to sell a 67% stake in the Port of Piraeus to Chinese shipping company China Cosco Holding Co. Under the deal, COSCO, the fourth-largest container shipping firm and second-largest port operator in the world, will pay the cash-strapped country 368.5 million euros (418.8 million U.S. dollars), and also promises to invest another 350 million euros (398.9 million dollars) over the next decade in infrastructure work at the port. In five years of operation…

Evergreen to Launch GTM Feeder Service

Evergreen Line to launch a new container ship feeder service linking Greece, Turkey & Malta (GTM). In addition to meeting regional transportation requirements, the GTM service will connect to Evergreen Line's global service network via the port of Piraeus in Greece.   The 600 TEU container ship Kirsten will service the intra-Mediterranean service. The first sailing is planned from Piraeus on the 28th of January 2013.The port rotation for the 10-day voyage is: Piraeus -Thessaloniki-Gebze -Marsaxlokk -Piraeus   GTM service will also further enhance transhipment connection to Thessaloniki. In addition, the feeder loop adds a direct call to Gebze and offers a convenient transportation link for the neighboring Izmit industrial area.  

Greek Government to Halt Piraeus Port Sale

The new Greek government led by the left-wing Syriza party will halt the sale of a majority stake in the port of Piraeus, Greece's biggest, begun by the previous government, the deputy minister in charge of shipping said on Tuesday. "We will not sell a majority stake in Piraeus port," Thodoris Dritsas told Reuters. "The Cosco deal will be reviewed to the benefit of the Greek people." Greece had shortlisted China's Cosco Group and four other suitors as potential buyers of a 67 percent stake in Piraeus Port Authority OLP last year under its privatisation scheme agreed with its international lenders. Cosco manages two of the port's cargo piers. Binding bids for the stake were expected by the end of the month. Reporting by Lefteris Papadimas

Minoan Buys Four Ferries

Minoan Flying Dolphins acquired four ferries operating on routes to the Cyclades islands and the Argosaronic gulf. The vessels, which link the port of Piraeus with Paros, Naxos, Ios and Santorini with route extensions to Sikinos, Astypalea and Folegandros are expected to contribute about $7.9 million in revenues to the firm's total turnover. The latest purchases bring the company's total fleet to 67 vessels.

Minoan Flying Dolphins Buys Six Ferries

Minoan Flying Dolphins bought six ferries, operating in the sea routes linking the ports of Piraeus and Rafina with the Cyclades islands, from businessman Costas Agapitos. The cost of the acquisitions was not released. The ferries are Express Afrodite, Express Athena, Express Apollo, Express Hermes, Express Olympia and Express Santorini. The fleet additions will quadruple the present carrying capacity of Minoan Flying Dolphins in the Cyclade island routes. The number of passengers is expected to increase by 18,000 daily.

Minoan Flying Dolphins Acquires Five Used Ferries

Minoan Flying Dolphins, a subsidiary of Minoan Lines, has five used ferries to service routes linking the port of Piraeus with islands in the Saronic Gulf. The ferries are F/B Nefeli, F/B Georgios, F/B Saronikos, F/B Eftyhia and F/B Express Danae. The five ferries transport about 800,000 passengers and 100,000 cars. The cost of the transaction was not disclosed. Minoan Lines plans to list Minoan Flying Dolphins on the Athens bourse in 2000.

Container Traffic Grows in Piraeus

Image: Piraeus Port Authority

 Consolidating the port of Piraeus' position as the main pillar of the Chinese group Cosco’s overseas activity, its container traffic continues to break one record after another, reports Kathimerini.   The two terminals operated by Cosco handled a total of 329,600 containers in August, up 32.3 percent from the same month in 2015.   In August last year the negative impact of the strict capital controls had started to become clear and total traffic reached just 249,100 containers.   Records have been broken each month this summer, with 314,000 in June and 323,300 in July.  

Greek Coastguard Rescues 2,500 over Three Days

Greece's coastguard has rescued about 2,500 migrants and refugees off the country's eastern islands over the past three days, authorities said on Monday, as the flow of people trying to cross into Europe continued unabated. After a hiatus of a few days last week, Greek authorities resumed ferrying Syrian refugees to the mainland by ship on Saturday and the latest group of 2,500 refugees arrived at the port of Piraeus earlier on Monday. (Writing by Deepa Babington

Chinese to Acquire Greek Port as Gateway to Europe

Image: Port Of Piraeus

China's state-owned shipper China Ocean Shipping (Group), also known as Cosco Group and owned by China COSCO Holdings,  is on track to acquire Greece's largest container port, gaining a key foothold to expand China's economic and military presence in Europe and Africa under the "One Belt, One Road" trade route initiative. There were no other bidders, which suggests that China’s strategic aims of using the Greek port of Piraeus as getaway to Europe is one step closer to realization.

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