Larnaca Municipality has decided to block the entrance to Larnaca port if there is no progress in the signing of a multi-million contract for the redevelopment of the port and marina by June 15.
This is the second time within a week that the municipality had voiced concern over delays by the state in finalising the agreement with the joint venture Kition Ocean Holdings.
The agreement has been pending before the legal service of the Republic since February. The law office is to incorporate what was agreed during the negotiations in the agreement, the municipality said.
The municipal council had on May 26 voiced its displeasure with the delay. On June 1, it was briefed by a representative of the investor about the delay. Investors are concerned because no official will give a specific date on when the procedures will be completed and the contracts signed.
“The municipal council expressed its intense concern over the issue as despite its actions there has been no developments and decided to wait for developments in the next 15 days as it has received assurances from responsible agencies that efforts are underway to complete the procedure,” the municipality said in a written statement.
As a first step, the municipal council decided that if there is no development by June 15 and taking into consideration the decree prohibiting mass gatherings and protests is in force until July 14, municipal councilors will stage a protest, blocking the entrance to port and maintaining a distance in line with the decrees.
With the lifting of the restrictive measures and if there is no progress the municipal council will take more dynamic steps, it said.
Cypriot-Israeli consortium ‘Kition Ocean Holdings’ had presented their long-awaited €1.2 billion redevelopment plan of Larnaca port and marina in February.
The project covers the restructuring of Larnaca marina for 650 berths, the port and surrounding land development over an area of 220,000 sqm.
“Construction works will take approximately 10 years, and the concession agreement is for 40 years…our first step is to submit applications for the required permits with works set to begin in two years,” company CEO Panos Alexandrou had said at the time.
Plans include the development of the marina with the latest technological infrastructure, turning Larnaca port into one capable of serving large vessels, with the expansion of piers and docks and the construction of a modern passenger terminal.
The project is divided into four phases, with the first one including a new road that will connect Athens Avenue at Phinikoudes area with Famagusta Avenue – that is the first part of the new Larnaca-Dhekelia road.
Phase one also includes the Yacht Club, a 5000 square metres of space accommodating the offices of the marina, restaurants, event venues, sailing and diving schools as well as boat shops.
The second phase provides land and tourist development in the marina along with a traditional local produce market. In addition, 10,000 square metres of educational space will be constructed, to host university lectures and areas where research can be carried out, a medical school and center, a hotel, a tourist college and a university for environmental and energy studies.
The third phase provides for 45 luxury villas on a new breakwater with private boat moorings. To the north of the marina there will be a residential complex and a five star business hotel, a shopping centre and two additional residential complexes serviced by the hotel. According to investors, this will be the first private island in Cyprus.
The fourth phase is the project’s western part and concerns office premises with private parking spaces.
The consortium consists of The Prosperity Group and REM International. The investment is expected to generate revenue of €19.6 billion and create over 4,000 new jobs. Some €600 million have been budgeted for infrastructure.