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ENFIA Property Tax hikes for 1 mln owners.
13th June 2018  via ekathimerini
The data on the adjusted property rates used for tax purposes (known as “objective values”)
that the Finance Ministry released on Tuesday showed that for 946,671 households and 7,126
enterprises, the Single Property Tax (ENFIA) will grow this year by up to 200 euros, or a little
more in some cases.

Despite the interventions in the ENFIA rates, with the expansion of the brackets and the
increase in the tax-free threshold of the supplementary property tax, the government has not
managed to eliminate the added load on owners, leading to ENFIA hikes in densely populated
areas, on Greece’s islands and at tourism destinations in general.

According to the data on the revision of the rates across all 10,216 zones, 2,122 zones saw a
reduction, 4,302 saw no change and 3,792 (or 37.11 percent of all zones) recorded a rate hike.

Vehicle fleet in Greece among oldest in EU
11th June 2018  via ekathimerini
Greece has one of the oldest vehicle fleets in the European Union in all categories  –
passenger cars, light trucks and busses.

According to data from the  European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA) the
average age of vehicles in Greece in 2015 was 13.5 years.

Data from the Hellenic Association of Motor Vehicle Importers-Representatives show that in
2017 the average age of the vehicle fleet increased to 15.4 years.

Concerning light trucks, the average age in Greece was 16.8 years in 2015, while the average
age of trucks and buses was 18.7 years in 2015 – both the oldest in Europe.

This is significantly above the European average (10.7 years in 2015), while older fleets are
only found in countries of the former Eastern Bloc such as Poland, with an average age of
17.2 years and Lithuania with 16.7 years.

This is mainly attributed to the economic crisis, as many owners of old vehicles are unable to
replace them, but also due to the lack of incentives for the purchase of new cars and the
complex taxation system that acts as a disincentive for consumers buying new cars.
Ferry Service to Link Thessaloniki with Cyclades and Crete
8th June 2018  via GTP travel pages
Islands of Cyclades group will be linked with Thessaloniki and Crete via a bi-weekly ferry
service to be launched in the upcoming period, announced Alternate Shipping Minister
Nektarios Santorinios during the 15th Regional Conference held on Syros recently.

The route, to run twice a week for three months and connect Thessaloniki, Skiathos, Syros
and other Cyclades isles with Heraklion on Crete, is subsidized by government funds for
remote island regions.

Syros Island, Photo Source:
Syros Island, Photo Source:

“This ferry connection can create new markets for the Cycladic islands,” said Santorinios,
adding that “every Friday and Sunday, a high-speed ferry will be launched from Piraeus, which
will twice a week link Heraklion with the Cyclades, go to Syros, and from there to Santorini. In
this way, the problem of Syros’ connection with the mainland is largely covered”.
Scheduled refueling operation of Air Force One -  Trump touches down in Crete
11th June 2018  via
Air Force One stopped at Naval Support Activity Souda Bay in the early hours of 10 June for a
scheduled refueling.

Air Force One touched down just after 3 a.m. local time Sunday morning, 10 June for a
refueling evolution and departed at 4:41 a.m. local time.

Air Force One was traveling from Canada where President Trump participated in the G7
Summit and continued on to Singapore for the historic North Korean Summit with Kim Jong-un.”
Tsipras on three-day visit to UK
23rd June 2018  via ekathimerini
Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras is due to arrive in London on Monday for a three-day visit when
he is scheduled to meet with his counterpart, Theresa May, and the head of the Labour Party,
Jeremy Corbyn.

The Greek premier is to meet on Monday with Archbishop Gregorios of Thyateira and Great
Britain and later with young Greek scientists working in the UK capital, at the Hellenic Center of
London, at 6 p.m.

On Tuesday is his scheduled meeting with May at Downing Street. Later in the day he is to
meet with Corbyn. Finally on Wednesday, Tsipras is to speak at the London Business School.
Data of Greek taxpayers assets abroad are reaching tax authorities
19th June 2018   Apokoronas News via ekathimerini
The first batch of data concerning Greek taxpayers with deposits and financial assets abroad
is in the hands of the Independent Authority for Public Revenue. The details were sent by
fellow European Union states in the context of an automatic exchange of information.

The information is being forwarded to the tax inspection mechanism to establish whether the
assets (properties or bank accounts) identified abroad have been declared.

At the same time, the country’s banks are in the process of submitting to the IAPR their
account data on tax residents in other countries in the context of the automatic data exchange,
which also includes the United States. This process, which is conducted under strict
confidentiality, has been completed for EU member-states and third countries except for the
US, in which case the process is expected to finish on Wednesday.

The IAPR is going to send all of this information to the countries concerned by end-September,
meeting its international obligations within the deadline. Also by end-September, Greek tax
authorities will receive details for all accounts and assets held by Greeks in the Cayman
Islands, Singapore, Switzerland, Monaco, Panama, Hong Kong and Lebanon.
Firefighters contain large blaze at university campus in Irakleio
23rd September 2018  via ekathimerini
A large firefighting effort on Sunday contained a blaze that had broken out on a campus of the
University of Crete near the port of Irakleio at around 8 a.m.

Twenty-eight firefighters manning 25 engines had  been dispatched to the scene while
authorities asked units of the National First Aid Center (EKAB) to stand by as thick black
smoke engulfed the area and the blaze approached the Venizeleio hospital.

The police blocked off road access to the university and evacuated the students who
happened to be at the campus though the fire was not close to student accommodation.

According to the Athens-Macedonia news agency, the building where the fire broke out was
not in use.

The cause of the blaze remained unclear.
Indian-Greek venture to start work on new Crete airport next year.
21st  September 2018  via ekathimerini
A Greek-Indian consortium has been awarded the contract to build a new airport on the island
of Crete, a consortium official said on Friday.

Ariadne Airport Group, a joint venture between India’s GMR Airports and Greek contractor
GEK Terna, was the preferred bidder for the 850 million euro project and will begin
construction at the start of next year.

Greece formally accepted the offer on Thursday after the terms of the contract were finalised
and EU and other authorities gave the necessary approvals.

A Greek court of auditors is expected to clear the project next month before the contract is
signed and put to a Greek parliamentary vote by the end of the year, the Ariadne official said.

“Construction sites logically will start being set up at the beginning of next year,” the official told
Reuters on condition of anonymity..
Fraport to increase charges at ‘upgraded airports’ – Chania included
21 September June 2018  via Apokoronas News

Fraport Greece this week announced that from 1st April 2019 it will increase fees at three
airports whose upgrades will be completed by the end of the year.  This increase affects
Chania, while the other two airports facing increased charges are Kavala and Zakynthos.

The terms of the concession agreement with Fraport foisted on the Greek government by the
lenders entitles the company to increase per passenger fees to €18.5 from the present €13
once upgrades are completed.

The company will have to first consult with the airlines using the airport ahead of the increase,
a process that will begin in November.
High charges for cash withdrawals with foreign-issued cards
12th August  2018  via
eKathimerini — Greek banks are charging holders of debit and credit cards issued abroad 2-3
euros every time they withdraw cash from an ATM.

The new commission fee came into effect at the end of July and was immediately noticed by
both tourists and Greeks who have accounts at banks outside Greece.

The banks notify the cardholder about the new charge with a message that appears when the
person uses a cash machine.

Holders of Greek bank debit cards who use ATMs of a different bank are also charged
between €1.30 and €2.20, depending on issuing bank and withdrawal amount.  Checking an
account balance at different bank’s ATMs also carry a charge of 14 to 18 eurocents..
Massive cannabis cargo seized in Crete
13 December 2018  via ekathimerini
The Greek coast guard seized six tons of hashish and a container full of Captagon pills
onboard a foreign-flagged vessel that was moored at the port of Iraklio for inspection, in an
ongoing operation which started last Sunday.

Captagon is an amphetamine-based drug.

According to information reported in local news website on Thursday, the
Syria-flagged freighter NOKA initially docked at the port of Sitia where coast guard officials
searched for drugs and weapons.

On Sunday NOKA sailed to Iraklio where a more thorough operation was launched to search
inside the 18 containers stacked onboard the vessel.
Crete has a total of 32,535 non-Europen Union foreign residents
6 December 2018 Tomos News via
The foreign residents of Crete who come from countries outside the EU total 32,535, the
regional directorate of foreigners and migration said on Friday, according to ANA.

Of these, 12,418 (or 38% of the total) live in Iraklio, the island’s main city; 9,652 (30%) in
Chania; 6,225 (19%) in Rethymno; and 4,240 (13%) in Lassithi. All of them are permanent
residents of the island with their families and contribute taxes and insurance payments as
usual, it adeed.

The largest segment of the total comprises Albanian nationals (22,025 individuals, or 68%
of the total), followed by Russians, Ukrainians, Indians, Georgians, Syrians, Pakistani,
Moldavian, Serbs and Chinese. It should be noted that of the 1,181 Indian nationals living
on Crete, 98% live and work in Rethymno.
Crete connection to the mainland grid given final go-ahead
14 October 2018  via Apokoronas News

After nearly 50 years of discussions, announcements, proposals and feasibility studies the
cable connection that will link the electricity network of Crete to the mainland was given the
final go-ahead  the minister of energy and environment Giorgos Stathakis announced at a
press conference in Heraklion last week

The project involves two connections, the ‘short one’ between Crete and the Peloponnese and
a ‘long one’ which will connect Crete to Cyprus and Israel.

The interconnector, which is expected to be completed by the end of 2022, will significantly  
lower the cost of power generation in Crete, reduce pollution and make it easier to increase
production of electricity from renewable sources in Crete.
Duty Free Shops Investments for Three Greek Airports Get Green Light
27 November 2018  via GTP Travel Pages

Hellenic Duty Free Shops SA announced this week that investments for upgrade and
expansion works at the airports of Rhodes, Zakynthos, and Chania, as well as projects
including the extension of space at Heraklion Airport, were moving ahead following a relevant
decision published in the Government Gazette.

The company has said it will be investing a total of 55 million euros to upgrade the travel
experience at Greek airports, including the company’s refurbishment project at Athens
International Airport, the revamp of the Duty Free area at Heraklion Airport inaugurated earlier
this year, as well as the planned revamps at 14 regional airports managed by Fraport Greece.
According to Hellenic Duty Free Shops SA, upgrade and expansion works are expected to be
completed in the Extra-Schengen area of Rhodes Airport by April 2019, with projects at
Zakynthos and Chania airports ready before that.

Hellenic Duty Free Shops SA’s development plan foresees the “walkthrough” model adopted
by its parent company Swiss Dufry AG which ensures passengers have immediate access to
the shops on their way to the gates.