A year ago the mere mention of Greece selling its real estate, let along its prized islands, was enough to fill Syntagma square with tear gas, laser light pointers and the occasional riot dog. Now - nobody cares, which is why the statement by Greek PM Samaras that he is ready to start selling Greek islands was largely met with a yawn across the investing world.
Greece’s prime minister is quoted Thursday in an interview in France’s Le Monde as saying the government could cash in on uninhabited islands.
Antonis Samaras said investment is key to reviving the economy, and that privatization plans include selling railways and a part of the Attica coast.
Asked if the government is ready to sell uninhabited islands too, he said, ‘‘as long as this doesn’t pose problems for national security, some of these isles could have a commercial use.’’
He didn’t elaborate or say the government would sell the islands altogether: ‘‘This is not, in any way, about selling them off for cheap, but about transforming unused terrain into capital that could generate revenue, at a fair price.’’
Of course, nobody in their right mind will "buy" a Greek island for three reasons:
- Said island will soon be used as secret collateral for loans to the ECB and Germany, meaning there will be no equity value left for the "buyers"
- "Buyers" can't take it with them, and
- All island sales will be promptly re-nationalized when the opposition takes control of government in the next election in a few months, kicking Greece out of the Euro, and declaring all previous "deals" null and void, just before it announces Odious debt means all Greek debt is also null and void.
And to think all of this could have been avoided if Greece simply collected taxes....