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Parliament to be briefed on ongoing €1.2 billion Larnaca port and marina saga

The much-discussed development of the port and the marina of Larnaca, has once again been referred to the Parliament, in the light of the demands put forward by Kition Ocean Holdings and which essentially constitute deviations from the contract the company signed.

The matter is anticipated to be discussed before the 24 April meeting of the Parliamentary Committee on Transport, Works and Communications, in the presence - among others - of the Minister of Transport, Works and Communications Alexis Vafeades, the Auditor General Odysseas Michaelides and representatives of Kition.

It is worth noting that by the afternoon of 23 April, the contractor company had not deposited the guarantee amounting to €4.2 million, as was agreed last Monday at the Presidential Office.

The deposit of the guarantee is set by the government as a condition, in order for the competent Committees to proceed with the examination of Kition's requests, without in any case presuming that part or all of these requests will be accepted.

"We are on hold..."

Speaking to InBusinessNews on 23 April, the responsible minister, Alexis Vafeades, said that "so far (as of the afternoon of 23 April) the guarantee has not been submitted by the company and we are on hold."

Answering a related question, and after emphasising that there are no timetables in place, he said that "what we had to do was to give the company reasonable time to meet its obligations. If the reasonable time passes - for us a reasonable time is a week - and they do not respond, we will now have to see what we will do," he explained.

Regarding the next steps, Vafeades stated that "we will contact the company to see if they are facing any problem or if they have any issue and need more time", indicating that "we are not aggressive. We are cooperative."

"We will await, I repeat, how the company will act and we will act accordingly. If the company does not respond and there is a refusal to cooperate, we will refer to the Law Office and consider our options. However, if the company cooperates, we will consider all legal avenues to help it meet all its obligations in relation to the project," he pointed out.

An audit is also underway by the Audit Office

It is worth mentioning that the Audit Office is also conducting an audit of the project, for which it has requested and received from the Ministry of Transport, Works and Communications a series of related data.

As the agency's press representative, Marios Petrides, told InBusinessNews , the Audit Office requested the following information from the Ministry of Transport:

  • Description of the project and the value towards the execution of mandatory and non-mandatory projects.
  • Main contractual dates.
  • Date of commencement of work in practice.
  • Brief description and value of work performed to date.
  • Contractor's contractual obligation to provide bank guarantees (types, duration and amount).
  • Date of submission and renewal of bank guarantees and report of any outstandings.
  • Description of the contractor's requirements for changes to the works to be performed.
  • Measures and actions of the Ministry of Transport for the contractor's compliance with its contractual obligations.
  • The reasons why the tender for the project's independent engineer has not been re-announced.

According to InBusinessNews sources, the information in question was submitted and is being studied by the Audit Office since last Friday (19 April).

It is noted that after studying the data, the Audit Office is expected to issue a relevant Report towards the end of the year.

(Source: InBusinessNews)

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