“The arbitration process was imperative as it referred to the heart of the investment, which is the creation of a metallurgic industry in Greece. We chose arbritration to offer a permanent solution,” Environment and Energy Minister George Stathakis said on Tuesday, commenting on developments in the case of Eldorado Gold.
Speaking to ANA radio, Stathakis said: “The investment plan, approved by previous governments, has three parts: Skouries, Olympiada and metallurgy to produce clean metals. This third part has not been licensed and we believed that unless this issue was resolved, the terms of the contract were not fully met. This is what’s at stake,” adding that the metallurgy issue was the reason that previous investors failed.
Stathakis reiterated that the government has pledged that “the outcome of arbitration will be binding,” adding that the government was moving step-by-step toward adhering to the contract.
Commenting on the Hellinikon project, Stathakis expressed his confidence that, as long as everyone moved within the law and there was dialogue, there was no reason for the investment to be blocked.
“From our side, all steps have been made correctly, we have – for the first time – the submission of a plan by the investor, there are issues to be resolved but these are fully manageable in my opinion,” he said.
Stathakis said the government has set a 15-day timetable to deal with the oil spill. The Greek minister said that a regional development conference in Crete, to be held in Heraklion on September 20-21, will include significant issues in its agenda, related to the energy sector.
Commenting on the ongoing negotiations with the institutions ahead of completing a third review of the Greek programme, Stathakis said the government was preparing to be ready to complete the review before Christmas.