Plans to construct a multi-billion-euro leisure project in the Paphos area of Geroskipou are at risk of falling through, following a disagreement between the government and the potential Hungarian investor.
The two sides had met earlier this week in a bid to find a solution to their disagreement over whether or not the sea off Paphos belonged to the state. After no breakthrough was found, the investor reportedly pulled out of the negotiations. However, on Thursday he said that the issue was not over, and that he was not going to leave the negotiations.
The Hungarian investor had been previously identified in some media circles as being Sandor Kenyeres – a billionaire property developer who is currently living on the island, and who owns the Antara Spa Resort in Polis Chrysochous.
The dispute stemmed from the disagreement between the investor and the government over demands that the investor foot an annual rental fee of €5.5 million for the artificial island that he planned to construct off Geroskipou, as part of the Eden City project.
The government had maintained that the island would still be situated on state-owned land, even though the plans foresee it being situated in the sea off Geroskipou’s coastline.
The venture has earmarked a marina for 500 berths, an art academy, an aquarium, three large hotels, apartment complexes and other buildings. The area was set to span one square kilometre, the majority of which was uncultivated government land, while some of the land belongs to the Church of Cyprus and private landowners.
The whole project is estimated to cost around €3.5 billion.
This is not the first time that the investor and government have run into differences over prices and licensing. The project was first tabled around three years ago.