Piraeus Port Authority revealed its ambitious plans to expand services and become the prime cruise hub in eastern Mediterranean.
The announcement was made at the 4th Posidonia Sea Tourism Forum held in Athens to an audience comprising the major international operators of the sector.
The plans of Piraeus Port Authority (now managed by Chinese COSCO group) include the construction of 4 new mooring slots for cruise ships at port's southern side with the purpose to receive ships of up to 390 meters in length, also building of a luxurious hotel and shopping centre, entertainment and food service sites.
This would see the cruise port take on a leading role in Mediterranean and become an important player in the booming Chinese market.
Meanwhile, despite the ongoing crisis, the country is keeping a leading position in global shipping industry.
The Greek fleet has been expanding since 2010, and accounts for 23% of the expansion of the world's fleet. Shipowners in Greece have taken advantage of global financial crisis, buying ships at lower prices to strengthen and renew their fleets.
Making the most of the strong cashflow, since 2010 they have acquired up to 89.3 million GT, out of a total addition of 391 million gross tons to the global fleet.
This signifies a growth of 74% for the Greek-owned fleet during the last 7 years, while 196 ships with a capacity of 20.6 million GT are still under construction.
Further proof of the growth of the Greek-owned fleet came from London's Greek Shipping Cooperation Committee, stating that the number of Greek vessels with a capacity over 1,000 GT each totalled 4,085 in March 2017, with a total capacity of 192.43 mill GT.