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Qatar's emir seals purchase of Greek private island: local mayor

[ 05 March 2013 03:11 ]


Baku-APA. Qatar's Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani purchased a small private island in the Ionian Sea in western Greece and is interested in the acquisition of five more nearby islets, Greek media reported on Monday, APA reports quoting Xinhua.


In statements to local media, Mayor of the neighboring island of Ithaka Yannis Kassianos confirmed the sale of Oxia, an uninhabited island of about 4,200 acres from the previous Greek-Australian owners for 4.9 million euros (6.37 million U.S. dollars).


In addition, according to Kassianos, the Emir has already made an offer of about 3.5 million euros (4.55 million dollars) for the purchase of five more islets of a total of 1,600 acres located in the same area which belong to the administration of Ithaka and plegded to support a project to bring water from the mainland to Ithaka.


Due to the increases in property taxes as part of efforts to resolve the Greek debt crisis since 2010, Greek wealthy families who own small private islands for decades, have decided to put them on the market.


Beyond the interest in the purchase of private islets, the royal family of Qatar and the country's investment authority have expressed interest in several investment opportunities in debt-laden Greece over the past two years, such as the sale of public real estate properties under the Greek privatization program.