Lamda Development: Helleniko privatization impossible amid continuous hurdles placed by state

Friday, 10 November 2017 18:15

Athens-based Lamda Development, the lead partner in a consortium that has won a major real estate development concession, on Friday officially made its displeasure known over what it calls a "practice of continually placing obstacles" before the investment.

The Helleniko property development project is billed as one of the biggest in Europe at the moment, with a budget kicking off at seven billion euros. However, the project has faced repeated bureaucratic hurdles exacerbated by a slow-moving Greek state administration.

These obstacles, according to Lamda, "... upset the necessary climate of trust, and at the same time, are intensely troubling in terms of implementing the Helleniko investment..."

In going into one detail, the company said archaeological finds and places of interest were clearly delineated and presented to nine candidate investors when an international competition was declared in 2011. The archaeological finds were unearthed over previous decades from repeated construction - including for old Athens airport - in coastal southeast  Athens. The only designated site was at the Aghios Kosmas seafront, the company said.

As a result, Lamda claims, its overall planning took into account the archaeological maps as presented in 2011. Nevertheless, without any finds or excavation taking place since 2011 a culture ministry-affiliated council recently declared a new archaeological area within the land set for development, as presented in a master plan.

Greece's creditors have also repeatedly told the Greek government that the Helleniko project, a memorandum-mandated privatization, should be rapidly implemented.

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