7th EuroMed Conference of the EuroMed Academy of Business: The Future of Entrepreneurship
18-19 September 2014
Greece, located at the eastern portion of the Mediterranean Sea (Med) and a country with an enormous number of islands, is a shipping superpower. The Med is amongst the world’s busiest waterways. It provides access to the Black Sea and quite often it is characterized as the most important element of the transport chain between Asia and Europe. The Greek Prime-Minister himself has openly declared his strategic vision to transform the country into a major hub for Europe's commerce; numbers of port-visits in the country under discussion are extremely high and expectations are that with the upcoming recovery of the Greek economy they will further increase. However, the current infrastructures -especially those of Piraeus and Thessaloniki (the largest and busiest ports of the Hellenic Republic)- are clearly in need of expansion. This paper briefly examines the framework of Public-Private Partnerships (PPP) and suggests that the specific methodology can provide a solution to overcome the need of financing for the various urgently needed projects that will allow the introduction of new and improved services towards various types of ships. The obvious conclusion is that with the Greek economy still in recession, the necessary framework that will allow the commencing of the technical works, such as the expansion of berths and storage facilities and the interconnections with highways and rail-lines, can be found only through partnerships of the government controlled port-authorities and large in size constructing companies of the private sector. These partnerships should be considered as a win-win situation for all parties involved. They provide an ideal opportunity for expanding infrastructures and/or services towards shipping without adding more to the already enormous government-guaranteed debt.