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FRAPORT to claim €70million for ramshackle Greek regional airports

The German-Greek consortium FRAPORT plans to claim a compensation of 70 million euros from the Greek state citing “the miserable condition of the 14 regional airports it acquired in April. The unprecedented high amount is almost double than the amount the Greeks received for selling their national railway TRAINOSE to the Italians for 45 million euros beginning of the month.

According to a report by German magazine Der Spiegel, “German airport operator Fraport has anger with the 14 regional airports Greek airports, which it took over in the course of the privatization of state property in April for more than 1.2 billion euros.”

“Fraport wants to claim compensation of about 70 million euros. The airports, among them the second largest of the country in Thessaloniki and top tourism destinations such as the airport in Corfu, are clearly in a much worse condition than they had expected. The concession contract stipulates that Fraport can claim compensation in this case.”

Fraport had reportedly assigned an independent expert, who submitted a status report on all Greek airports acquired by Fraport in June. According to the report, there are numerous problems. For example, thousands of burnt-out lights, broken doors, disappeared or non-functioning fire extinguishers. Some deficiencies are a security risk – “also for the many German tourists coming to Greece,” Der Spiegel notes adding that “neither Fraport nor the Greek government wanted to comment on the information about the compensation.

The Germans want more than twice as much as the 30 million euros that the Greek government has to save in 2018 for the heating cost subsidies for families living in poverty.”

The article about the compensation comes just two days after Fraport CEO Alexander Zinell claimed that inspectors found 12,200 burned out bulbs, and that they had to replace 1,287 fire extinguishes and install 81 air-conditioners.

Two weeks earlier, Greece’s Transportation and Infrastructure Minister Christos Spirtzis had complained about the way Fraport operates the 14 regional airports saying that “they don’t even clean the toilets.

Unconfirmed media reports claimed that the Greek side – the Civil Aviation Authority – and Fraport would want to settle  – see: negotiation – the compensation via the legal ways.

As neither side wanted to confirm or dismiss the compensation amount, I assume that it is just an amount to serve as basis for negotiation.

However, Greek website ThePressProject published the a letter of the Civil Aviation referring to compensation demands Fraport. The letter is dated 12 May 2017 – that is: just two weeks after Fraport took over the regional airport.

The exact amount of compensation is €60,052,122. With the Value Added Tax the total amount is €74,464,631! The annual fee the Fraport has to pay to the Greek state is €22.4million. The income from privatizations go to Greek Privatization Fund in order to serve the Greek debts, while the expenses (like compensations) leave from the state cash registers.

I tip they will agree on 50,000,000 euro – provided that the independent expert will provide full evidence of the damages.

PS So if we divide the 70,000,000 to 12,200 burned out bulbs, Greeks will have to pay €5,737 per bulb. That’s pretty expensive, isn’t it?

Timeo Germani et investment ferrentes

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4 comments

  1. This is extremely cheesy and disgusting.

    FOURTEEN airports (including the second and third largest in Greece), 14 runways, 14 control towers, 14 terminals & hangars & access roads & cargo buildings etc. etc……… and ALL this for a pathetic 1.2 billion (peanuts)…..and these CREEPS are demanding compensation for replacing light bulbs and 81 new air conditioners. Probably they are jealous of the italians (an entire national railway network for the price of 47 big but not enormous beach villas). These are real highway robbers.

    Sorry but they are just making fun of the Greeks, knowing they can claim anything no matter how outrageous and Greece’s carpetbagging EU handlers will just wink and fork it over. Meanwhile the “pretend parliament” in Syntagma will and can do nothing.

  2. Sounds more likely that the maintenance works the Airports were supposed to do prior to FRAPORT taking over, were never done. FRAPORT appear to be following the Contract which allows them to be paid if they do the work instead. Obviously the previous management decided not to pay and do the work and its now come back to bite them on the bum.

  3. If Greece had sold its railway network for a single Euro it would already be positive given that the state run railway produced how many hundreds of million Euro deficit each year that the greek state had to cover?

    1.2 Billion for 14 run down airports is a lot of money (how much yearly deficit did those produce by the way?), both sides signed a contract, and if the conditions of the airports are worse than the contract stated and the contract contains compensation clauses, why wouldn t a company that needs to produce profits so it can pay the greek state 22.4 million not ask for compensation?

  4. It seems an odd way to go about buying something. One would have thought that Fraport would have sent teams out to thoroughly check what they were buying before handing over the money. Caveat emptor, and all that.

    If I buy a used car, and having got it home notice that all the tyres need replacing, I don’t go back to the seller and demand €400 compensation. The fault was mine for not checking the goods before I bought.

    Also, I thought part of the deal was that Fraport were going to improve and modernise the airports anyway. Sounds decidedly dodgy to me.

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