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The challenges for the new Minister of Infrastructure and Transport

Νίκος Καραγιάννης

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Κώστας Καραμανλής

The first week after the national election is succeeded by expectations and challenges regarding the Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport.

The successor of Mr. Christos Spirtzis, Mr. Kostas Karamanlis, has a long list of issues in his hands that require either an immediate solution or swift responses.

The first, concerns the realization of new generation projects and, in particular, the boost of large-scale infrastructure projects such as Athens Metro Line 4, Patras-Pyrgos Motorway, as well as the launch of others such as Elefsina-Yliki Motorway, which is also the flagship project proclade by the ruling party, New Democracy, in its governmental plan.

Moreover, the blockage of many projects at the Council of State is yet another problem inherited by previous administrations to the new Infrastructure and Transport Minister, Mr. Karamanlis.

There are also tendering issues associated with the use of L.4412/2016 which, even though was originally introduced to improve the situation, it eventually became more complicated than before, as well as problems related to big discounts, challenges regarding the utilization of new and more efficient financial tools, etc.

In the field of Transport, things have another dimension. In urban transport for Athens and Thessaloniki, there is a need to address the current situation, which in addition to the passenger traffic increase (especially in Athens) due to the electronic ticketing system, there is also an urgent need for the procurement of new buses for both cities that will partially replace the old, outdated fleets.

In the field of road transport, a major issue remains the influx of trucks with foreign plates that «steal» a significant part of the «cake» in the domestic market, resulting to a stagnation of the Greek truck fleet, which is one of the most obsolete in Europe.

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Vinci possible contender for Athens International Airport 30% stake

Νίκος Καραγιάννης

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Διεθνής Αερολιμένας Αθηνών

The accelerated bids for the sale of Athens International Airport 30% stake has attracted a significant international investment interest. Interested parties are now getting ready in view of the Expression of Interest, initially set for October 29, 2019. The French company Vinci, which is already involved in major concessions in our country, is also expected to bid.

Among the contenders are the existing Canadian shareholders of «Eleftherios Venizelos», PSP pension fund, Copelouzos Group (holds 5% of AIA) and the Indian GMR, which is participating in the joint venture for the new Kasteli Airport in Crete.

In a recent press event for the 15 years of Rio-Antirio Bridge, Dr. Panagiotis Papanikolas, Managing Director of Vinci Concessions S.A. Greece, has not officially announced the company’s interest, but sources close to the process confirm it.

«As a company we have made a strategic shift towards airports, internationally. We are in the top  3 airport operators worldwide. We had submitted a bid for the 14 Regional Airports too. I don’t want to reveal much about ‘Eleftherios Venizelos’ Airport», he said.

However, it was implied that the interest of the French would have been even stronger if the State decided to sell its full 55% stake in order for the contractor to acquire AIA management. It is reminded that, in addition to the 30% stake of HRADF, another 25% is being held by the Hellenic Corporation of Assets and Participations.

The sale of Athens International Airport 30% is estimated to bring in 1-1.2bn euros to the funds of the Greek Privatization Program. It is also noted that AIA’s passenger traffic in recent years has set the bar very high, leading to the doubling of the price for the 20-year extension of the concession, which reached 1.38bn euros (incl. VAT), based exactly on this outstanding performance.

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Metro Madrid signs €44m maintenance contracts

ypodomes team

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Σήραγγες της Elizabeth Line στο Λονδίνο

The regional government of Madrid has awarded contracts worth more than €44m aimed at improving Metro Madrid services. The contracts cover safety, including security guards and CCTV systems, along with resources for improving the maintenance of trains and facilities.

Segurisa has been awarded a four-year, €31.3m contract for surveillance and security services at 13 depots across the network, replacing Ombuds which is currently facing bankruptcy proceedings. Madrid Metro also awarded a €4.3m contract for the comprehensive maintenance of the network’s CCTV system, which currently has more than 8600 cameras.

A three-year, €2.95m framework agreement has been signed for the installation and modernisation of station security systems, which control a number of functions including the automatic start-up of escalators, the public address system and the centralised remote control of stations.

A €3.3m contract has also been awarded for the repair and maintenance of the 1,000 escalators previously managed by Metro Madrid, along with a €2.55m contract to supply 1,520 tyres for series 9,000 trains over the next two years.

Source: railjournal.com

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Thessaloniki Ring Road to be upgraded with a 300m-euro PPP project

Νίκος Καραγιάννης

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Περιφερειακή Θεσσαλονίκης, fly-over

A PPP project is being examined regarding the upgrading of the «congested» eastern section of Thessaloniki  Ring Road, by the Ministry of Infrastructure. This is one of the projects announced by the Greek PM, Kyriakos Mitsotakis, at the 84th Thessaloniki International Fair, a few days ago.

According to sources of ypodomes.com, the PPP option may succeed as it has already been applied in 2 other motorway tenders (i.e. Crete’s VOAK and Kalamata-Methoni road axes). The big benefit of this solution, if selected, will be the absence of tolls (although it has not been definitely decided).

This gives a great advantage to this method, if it is taken under consideration that the cost will reach 300m euros. If it proceeded as a public project it could be quite difficult as it would require a large amount of money from NSRF, a process that, based on former experience, is very time consuming.

A concession solution would lead to toll station and would turn the Ring Road into another Attiki Motorway of Thessaloniki, which neither the Ministry nor the local authorities probably want.

The main idea of the project is the creation of a fly-over with 2 lanes of traffic per direction. It will start from Papageorgiou Hospital and reach Konstantinopolitika area, with a length of about 4 km.

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