For several decades the heart of Greece’s ship repair industry was beating at Perama, a western suburb of Piraeus port, until the Greek debt crisis broke out in 2009. Thousands of workers lost their jobs and machines became rusty.
The image of the zone is changing dramatically since China COSCO Shipping took over in 2016 the management of Greece’s largest port after winning an international tender.
Chinese and Greeks work nonstop at this shipyard of Piraeus Port Authority (PPA) as part of a major plan to upgrade Piraeus port and support the economic revival of the wider region.
Work will not cease even during holidays, such as the Mid-Autumn festival which falls on Sept. 24 this year, Chinese expiates working here told Xinhua on Friday.
“You know ship repairing is a very special industry. The time is money. Every ship has its schedule. If the cargo delays or the schedule delays, it is a big loss to the clients… It is normal in China and I think here is the same. If the client needs it… we must hurry up here,” said Ma Liang, commercial manager at Perama shipyard.
Ma, 32, is a member of a team which arrived to Perama a few months ago, to help breathe new life into the zone. He has been working for a decade in COSCO.
Read more on Xinhua.