Cyprus Mail

Stakeholders to discuss Larnaca port impasse at Presidential Palace

larnaca marina
File photo: Larnaca Marina

Stakeholders are to convene on Monday morning at the Presidential Palace to discuss the impasse over the future of the planned Larnaca marina and port revamp.

The meeting, to be hosted by President Nikos Christodoulides will be attended by representatives of Kition Ocean Holdings and Aroundtown, the management companies, president of the Chamber of Commerce Stavros Stavrou, the director of the Transport Ministry Antonis Koutsoullis, Larnaca Mayor Andreas Vyras, and the Deputy Attorney-General Savvas Angelides.

Government spokesman Konstantinos Letymbiotis on Friday said the president’s intention was to hold this meeting to discuss issues concerning the project.

Commenting on statements by Transport Minister Alexis Vafeades that the company was not willing to file a letter of guarantee and asked if the government had perceived any change in the company’s stance, Letymbtiotis said that there had been none.

“The meeting at the level of the President of the Republic, will take place precisely to discuss these issues, which have occupied both the government and the local community,” the spokesman said.

Vafeades has previously expressed concern over delays to the start of works while the city’s mayor has said that changes in the design and further delays will not be accepted.

Christodoulides had responded to claims filed by the company against the state in court, saying that the state will not be blackmailed, and that he agrees with the public statements of the mayor and Larnaca MPs as regards the works.

He has added that he is willing to discuss possible approaches and find solutions within the agreed upon framework for the construction.

On Tuesday, Kition Ocean Holdings said they filed a case against the government for causing delays and breaching the contract.

According to CEO Oliver Corlette, the government had been unwilling to meet the company to discuss a difference in a financial guarantee.

The guarantee is one of three worth €10 million, which the company said needed to be recalculated, something the government refused, leading to the delay in the works.

Vafeades refuted the claims and reiterated that the company is violating an essential term of the contract due to the non-renewal of a €10 million letter of guarantee. He also said the government has the right to redeem remaining guarantees that are in force.

The company maintains it submitted requests, necessary for the project’s viability, to modify the phases of the project’s implementation, and that a difference arose between Kition Holdings and the government regarding the re-calculation of the amount of the guarantee.

The company received the key to the port and marina from the previous government on April 1, 2022 and was to start the first phase of the €1.2 billion project in April 2023. The latest extension secured by the company for the start of major projects ends in June.

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