The largest private conglomerate in China-the Fosun Group-recently bagged a coveted project in Greece. The project, worth USD 200 million, will see the Chinese company redeveloping an old airport in Athens. This marks yet another step in the expansion plans of the company and an especially key decision from the standpoint of its Europe expansion plans. The deal was signed with the Latsis group, which is the parent firm of Lamda Development – a major real estate firm. The deal-signing ceremony took place at the Zappeion Hall during Chinese Premier Li Keqiang’s recent visit to Greece to promote bilateral trade between the two countries.
As part of the deal, the two countries will now work in tandem to develop the old airport at Hellenikon, located 8 km from Athens. Fosun is not only investing USD 200 million in the project, but will also be seeking broader cooperation from its Greek counterpart in the future. The report was carried by 21st Century Business Herald, a Chinese newspaper in which Fosun holds a 40% share.
The Hellenikon project, which carries a 99-year lease, is spread over a 6.2 sq km area, making it three times the size of Monaco. The total area features an air port that occupies 5.25 sq km as well as a seaside area occupying 0.95 sq km. According to IOBE – a Greek research firm - it is expected that the project will create as many as 50,000 new job opportunities over the next decade. This airport redevelopment deal was one among the 20 commercial and state agreements that Greece and China had signed recently.