Qatar royal buys Greek island - report

Gulf state continues buying spree with reported €5m purchase of island
(image for illustrative purposes only)
By Claire Valdini
Sun 22 Apr 2012 11:49 AM

A member of Qatar’s royal
family has purchased a Greek island for €5m, according to a local report.

The 1,236-acre island, named
Oxia, was initially advertised by owners the Greek-Australian
Stamoulis family for €6.9m ($9.1m), Greek daily Ekathimerini reported, citing unnamed sources.

The island’s new owners are
expected to develop part of the island, it added.

The island is located
in the Ionian Sea, near Ithaca, and is protected by the Natura 2000 ecological
network, the newspaper said.

Greece's government has been under pressure to privatise the country's islands in the wake of its sovereign debt crisis.

The sale follows a week
after Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund announced it had signed an agreement to
acquire Smeralda Holding, owner of luxury hotel resorts on Costa Smeralda in
Sardinia.

Qatar Holding said it will
acquire a portfolio consisting of four luxury hotels with a total of 372 rooms,
the Porto Cervo Marina, the Porto Cervo Shipyard, the Pevero Golf Club, a 51
percent interest in 2,290 hectares of adjacent undeveloped land and various
other real estate assets in Costa Smeralda.

“We intend to continue
supporting the on-going development programme which will see Costa Smeralda
strengthen its position as one of the world’s top resort destinations,” Ahmad
Mohamed Al-Sayed, managing director and CEO of Qatar Holding, said in a
statement.

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