Greece prepares to lease islands as kickstarts privatisation drive

GREECE has identified up to 40 islands that could be leased to developers in a desperate bid to reduce its debt, in order to receive further international aid.

The country which has 6,000 islands, many of which are uninhabited, plans to lease the land to developers for up to 50 years enabling them to build houses and hotels on them.

The plans are part of a privatisation drive, kickstarted yesterday in a bid to appease international lenders.

Greece also plans to start the sale of 29 per cent of one of its most profitable companies – gambling monopoly OPAP – next week.

Inspectors from the troika of European Commission, European Central Bank and International Monetary Fund lenders are in Athens currently to determine whether the country gets further aid under its latest bailout programme.