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Cyprus

Troodos state properties to get fresh development

By Staff Reporter

THE government is poised to make available to private investors state properties for development in the Troodos mountains, local reports said.

Daily Politis writes that the government will soon – perhaps even on Friday – issue a decree making houses, land and abandoned mines subject to privatisation.

Although the state would retain ownership status over these immovable properties – many of which are currently idle – the move would allow for their long-term leasing or concessions for commercial or tourist development.

According to the paper, the finance ministry and the communications and works ministry have already identified 133 such properties in the Troodos area, covering a total 405,000 square meters.

These include 65 homes in Pano Platres, 26 land plots with homes in Pano Platres, Amiandos and Lysos, old mines, and camping sites in Kakopetria and Spilia.

A few of the earmarked homes are massive, over 1,000 square meters, while another area in Amiandos is reportedly more than 11,000 square meters.

Other buildings include an old hospital, a parking space in Lysos, restaurants and blocks of flats. Some of the areas even incorporate a fully-developed road grid.

The decree, along with a table of the properties, is to be published in the government gazette.

Once the decree is published, the Privatisations Unit will issue a call for tender for hiring private consultants, whose task would be to recommend the best method for developing each of the properties.

The next stage would involve inviting actual expressions of interest from private investors. Both Cypriots and foreign nationals would be eligible.

Among other things, the plan is to allow for restoration of old homes or the building of ancillary structures for newer ones, making them more attractive for tourism purposes.

Several state properties in the Troodos mountains are being leased for a token fee, well below their rent market value. In many of these cases, the arrangements were made as far back as British rule.

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