Journalist: Good morning, Mr. Georgiadis.
Minister: Good morning. Thanks so much for the invitation.
Journalist: The notorious investment in Ellinikon, you have made relative statements, people know, have heard them…
Minister: Everything I have said since the first day I became a Minister is kept in writing.
Journalist: You had said that it would start within the year, now there is a statement about January 2020.
Minister: No, we haven’t said anything about January.
Journalist: Mr. Flampouraris used to answer the same question with the response “one week ago”, do not do the same.
Minister: I have never made such a statement.
Journalist: When do you think that the investment will start? I am referring to the processes that will get us to that point, I am not talking about the start of bulldozers work, that would have been a joke question.
Minister: The milestone that will allow us to state that the investment is really moving has nothing to do with the beginning of bulldozers work. The collection of the Lamda Development payment-in-advance of €300 million is the milestone. It is the day that for the first time…
Journalist: That we will collect money.
Minister: Yes, this day will be within 2019.
Journalist: That is the substance, when the Greek State will collect money.
Minister: Within 2019.
Journalist: Now I would like to ask about the skyscrapers. You will build six skyscrapers.
Minister: I won’t build anything.
Journalist: The investors I mean, after receiving the building license from the Greek State.
Minister: It would be great, should I have enough funds available to build not one but just a half skyscraper.
Journalist: Ok, then I wish I could purchase an apartment in the investment area, but the problem is, whether you will build the skyscrapers or not, because they will hide the sun. You will also build a casino, they will be coming in…
Minister: The Meltemi winds (northern winds)?
Journalist: Exactly, the Meltemi winds.
Minister: The number, the height and the location of the buildings have been set by the previous Government. The present Government has not done anything in this regard, because all these have been reflected in the Presidential Decree already adopted by the previous Government, the master plan.
Journalist: So you are suggesting that the SYRIZA government had already decided to build the six skyscrapers?
Minister: Yes, you just have described it exactly as it happened. I underline that, because I hear different things, e.g. from Mr. Nikos Pappas, Minister of the previous government. I suppose that he is suffering from vertigo..
Journalist: Why vertigo?
Minister: Because when Mr. Pappas makes such statements…
Journalist: When something does not fit your interests, you call it vertigo?
Minister: Listen, he stated that I am responsible for filling the Ellinikon area with cement, that when I apply the master plan set by the previous government and already voted by the Greek Parliament as law of the Greek State, prior assuming my duties as Minister, well, you understand that he should probably suffer from some kind of vertigo…
Journalist: But if you think, the master plan has flaws, then why do not you change it? Request from the investors….
Minister: My reply to that question is that I agree with the actions of the previous government, I do not wish to alter the master plan of the investment.
Journalist: Then you agree with the previous government…
Minister: Of course, but as you can understand, I will not tolerate comments that point me as responsible for filling the Ellinikon area with cement. It is ridiculous, to find myself under accusations for simply applying the master plan set by the previous government and already voted by the Greek Parliament as law of the Greek State, prior assuming my duties as Minister, everyone can understand that. It is unacceptable.
Journalist: Is it possible that Mr. Pappas had not known that…
Minister: I do not know what to reply to this suggestion. He should have known..
Journalist: The question though was not about Mr. Pappas, it was about the skyscrapers….
Minister: Some argue also whether the skyscrapers are two or six. We are simply viewing them as six tall buildings.
Minister: Two out of six might be taller and reach over 250 meters.
Journalist: Let us lift the country higher; that is the important thing.
Minister: I read just before this interview an interesting article about the skyscrapers, by Mr. Malouchos in “Nea” newspaper, referring to the Greek Society’s worries about the skyscrapers and I have to admit that I had not realised there were such concerns.