The announcement earlier today by Canadian mining company Eldorado Gold to suspend all its operations in Greece, has caused cataclysmic reactions at home and abroad, against the Greek government.
The Syriza-led coalition government is being accused of being hostile towards foreign investments, given that Eldorado‘s decision came after two years of legal hurdles, allegedly set by the leftist government against the investment.
Eldorado’s decision “is a major blow for the Greek economy,” Mujtaba Rahman, managing director of Eurasia said. “It will make it harder for Syriza to successfully exit the bailout next year.”
“If Eldorado decides to leave, there will be short and long-term consequences,” said Panos Tsakloglou, a professor at the Athens University of Economics and Business, who was also a Greek bailout negotiator between 2012 and 2014. “In the short term, thousands of jobs will be lost with multiple effects on the local economy.”
In the long term, any move to leave the country would negatively affect the investment climate and would likely hinder the government’s efforts to attract foreign investors, he said. Especially since Greece is looking to privatize Hellinikon; the site of the former Athens airport.
Greek opposition parties soon joined the condemnation chorus against the government. Main opposition New Democracy (ND) spokesman Vassilis Kikilias, sternly attacked the PM during a TV interview on Monday.
Tsipras’s words “lack political weight and he has never kept any of his promises,” Kikilias said. “Following hard on “Tsipras’ crescendo in his Thessaloniki International Fair speech about investments that would sweep the country,” Kikilias added, “Eldorado Gold is now announcing its decision to suspend its operations in the country and pull out of Greece.”
Hellenic Federation of Enterprises (SEV) chairman Theodoros Fessas, called upon the government to find a “political solution” to the problem.
“Let’s listen to what they have to say, so we can maybe find a political solution to this issue, even at the very last moment,” Fessas told Skai TV on Monday, while urging Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras to meet with the managers of the Canadian company.