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China's COSCO takes over container business at Greek port

Source:   Time:

The Greek Piraeus Port Authority on Wednesday signed an agreement on transferring the operation of Piraeus container terminals to China's COSCO Pacific Ltd.

From Thursday on, Pier 2 and Pier 3 of Piraeus Container Terminals will be under COSCO management for 35 years, according to the agreement.

Li Keqiang, chief representative of COSCO in Greece, said the two sides would work together to build modern container terminals and provide reliable, flexible and high efficient services for shipping companies.

Piraeus is the biggest port in Greece and one of the most important ports in the Eastern Mediterranean region. Its handling capacity reached 1.37 million TEUs in 2007.

Greek Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis told Xinhua that COSCO's participation in the operation of Piraeus Port was important for both economies.

Piraeus Port could become an important hub for Chinese goods on the way to the EU markets and to the broader region of Southeastern Europe and the Eastern Mediterranean, she said.

Meanwhile, the agreement will bring Greece 4.3 billion euros (6.3 billion US dollars) in revenue over the 35-year period and create about 1,000 new jobs, she said. 
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