The Cyprus Ports Authority (CPA) will appoint a second consulting firm for the privatization of the commercial activities of the Limassol port as part of a privatisations plan to yield proceeds of 1.4 billion by 2018.
Alecos Michaelides, the President of CPA, told CNA that the Authority decided to appoint two consulting firms on the privatisation of the Limassol port’s commercial activities. The first specialises on operations and will determine which activities are to be privatised while the second will be a financial firm that will prepare the necessary documentation and the terms of tender.
According to Michaelides, the CPA will appoint auditing firm KPMG to determine the services which will be tendered to the private sector. “Along with KPMG there will be another firm with experience on port privatisations and will discuss which parts of the Limassol port will be privatised,” he said.
The CPA has already begun assessing initial offers on the second financial consulting firm. “Soon we will proceed with the tender to select the firm in October,” Michaelides added.
So far, Japanese financial services firm Nomura, Barclays Bank, Deustsche Bank and the American City Bank have expressed an interest.
“These firms are mostly financial consulting firms which will prepare the documents, the final terms of the tender, and assess the various options proposed by the first firm on what is to be privatised,” he noted.
Michaelides said the process of privatising the commercial activities of the Limassol port is expected to be concluded in mid-2015. He clarified however that the CPA will remain as a public organisation for the supervision and regulation of Cyprus ports.
A privatisation plan approved by the Council of Ministers last year stipulates that commercial activities at Limassol port, loading and unloading containers, transit point will be privatised on the basis of a long-term license to a suitable port operator. The operator will be selected after an international tender by the end of 2015.
The government approved the finalisation plan as part of a set of fiscal consolidation measures included in the terms of a €10 billion financial assistance programme Cyprus agreed with its international lenders (the EC, the ECB and the IMF) in March 2013. The plan covers the privatisation of Cyprus Telecommunications Authority and the CPA by end 2015 and Cyprus Electricity Authority by September 2017. Cyprus needs to secure proceeds of 1 billion by 2016 and an additional 0.4 billion by 2018.