ATHENS – Infrastructure, Transport and Networks Minister Christos Spirtzis strongly criticised the Fraport consortium for the way it was operating the 14 regional airports in Greece so far and for delaying investments to upgrade airport facilities.
Speaking to the ANA radio station, Spirtzis said that the Fraport consortium “is operating the 14 airports no better than the Civil Aviation Authority before it.”
Commenting on press reports alleging friction in relations between the German company and the Greek state over projects to upgrade runways in Macedonia airport in Thessaloniki, Spirtzis said: “Fraport has not moved ahead with the investments it had pledged, and we have seen problems even with toilet cleanliness, which at many airports is worse than it used to be in the past.” He urged the German company “to understand that it is an airport management company, it is not a company that will tell the country what works it will do and what it will not do,” and “stop making various remarks about how and what projects will be done, as these projects are in the contract and are co-funded projects, approved by the European Commission and all supervisory bodies.”
The Greek minister stressed that if there is any other request from the company, “the agreement provides a dispute settlement procedure”.
“A few months ago, Fraport was the one who pleaded not to continue the projects and to postopone them for a few months in order for the airport to be able to operate during the tourist season. What has changed since then; Why did the company say a few months ago to cancel and not continue the project?” he wondered and explained: “When Fraport submitted its offer or when the contract for the airport concession was signed the consortium did not make any remarks on the project despite the fact it had all the information available”.