Cyprus Mail

New plans for old ‘Qatari’ site

THE government is to issue an international invitation for expressions of interest (EOIs) for the development of a land plot opposite the Hilton Hotel in Nicosia, communications minister Tasos Mitsopoulos said yesterday.

Mitsopoulos disclosed the government’s plans while briefing MPs at the House Finance Committee of his ministry’s budget for 2014.

The EOIs would be directed at any interested investor, local or foreign, and the tender procedure would last about two months, the minister said.

Although he could not provide specifics, Mitsopoulos said the proposed development (via a long-term lease agreement) of the plot would likely relate to hotels, shopping malls and office space.

The plot in question is the same one over which a preliminary deal, signed in 2008 between the Qatari Diar Real Estate Investment Company and the then government, came to nothing.

That plan was to have a mixed-use development involving a luxury hotel, apartments, shops and offices which would be available to Cypriot and foreign investors.

The deal fell through when the Qataris bailed out after disagreements on whether the land should be leased or sold to the Qataris and also on the valuation of the land, which the Cypriots appear to have initially inflated.

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