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European Commission - Press release

EU invests in major growth-enabling infrastructure in Greece

Brussels, 24 March 2017

Over €1.3 billion of Cohesion Policy funds will be invested in ten broadband, transport and environmental projects in Greece.

This €1.3 billion investment effort will allow major projects that started in the 2007-2013 financial period to be completed in the current 2014-2020 period, for the direct benefit of the country's real economy and of the Greek people.

"These infrastructure projects co-financed by the EU are meant to support a Greek-led growth strategy. They are concrete expressions of EU solidarity. Over €35 billion of EU funds is invested in the country over the 2014-2020 financial period and they are powerful basis for a return to lasting prosperity. Coupled with the European Fund for Strategic Investments, the heart of President Juncker's Investment Plan, they can also attract more private investments," said Regional Policy Commissioner Corina Creţu.

  • Almost €51 million for broadband rollout in the country

This investment package aims to cover rural and remote areas of Greece with broadband. In line with the objectives of the Digital Single Market, this project contributes to reaching the goal of having the whole country connected by 2020. This will boost innovation and entrepreneurship, develop e-administration and services and allow rural communities to play a central role in the shift towards smart and sustainable growth in Greece.

  • €377 million for urban public transport systems in Athens and the region of Attica

The metro in Athens has benefitted from intensive EU financial support. Over €261 million will now be invested in the extension of the Athens metro Line 3, through the western suburbs of Athens to Piraeus, Greece's third largest and most important passenger and freight port. The project, which includes the construction of six new metro stations and the supply of 17 new trains, should be operational in 2020 and serve an additional 174,000 inhabitants of Athens.

Over €58 million is invested in the development of the tramway in Piraeus, to extend the line from the inner city to the port. The project also includes the construction of 13 tram stations and the supply of 25 vehicles. As a result, 11,000 more people will be able to use the tram network, which will help reduce traffic congestion in the city.

Finally, over €18 million is invested in the design, installation and operation of an integrated automatic fare collection system in Athens, which will cover all modes of public transport in the metropolitan area. Paper tickets will progressively be replaced by an electronic validation system, which will result in smoother journeys for users and reduce fare evasion.

  • Over €730 million for the extension of the metro in Thessaloniki, in Central Macedonia

The EU is financially supporting a modern, driverless metro system in the city of Thessaloniki to boost the local economy. Over €407 million will be invested in the completion of the city's Metro Main Line, including new tunnels, renovation work in metro stations and the supply of 24 trains. Once operational in 2020, the metro line expects 247,000 passengers daily, which will reduce the amount of traffic in the Thessaloniki area and improve air quality.

In addition, almost €323 million will put towards the extension of the metro to the city of Kalamaria, southeast of Thessaloniki. This will improve everyday life in the urban area, especially for commuters between Kalamaria and Thessaloniki.

  • Almost €50 million for sustainable mobility in the Peloponnese peninsula, in the South of Greece

The Athens–Patras railway line connects the port of Patras, the port of Piraeus and the International Athens Airport. As such, it is a key transport axis, located on the Orient/East-Mediterranean corridor of the Trans European Transport Network (TEN-T) core network. This €50 million investment will finance modernisation works on the section between the towns of Diakofto and Rododafni. It will boost the economic development of the region and diversify transport modes for freight and passengers traffic between major cities and ports.

  • €38 million for better collection and treatment of waste in the region of Attica

This money will help finance the construction of a modern sewage network of almost 100 km and a waste water treatment plant in the towns of Koropi and Paiania, southeast of Athens, in line with EU environmental standards and requirements. Close to 95,000 people will benefit from an upgraded waste management system.

  • €92 million for better connectivity in the North of Greece

Over €64 million is invested in the upgrading of the Western Internal Ring road of Thessaloniki and collateral roads, for a better and faster connection from the city to major road networks – the Egnatia highway, the Piraeus – Athens – Thessaloniki – Evzoni ("PAThE") motorway and the Orient/East-Mediterranean TEN-T corridor. As traffic congestion will be reduced as a result, the population will experience less air and noise pollution, especially the one million inhabitants living in the Western districts of the city (Ampelokipoi-Menemeni, Kordelio-Evosmos and Pavlou Mela).

In addition, almost €28 million is invested in the completion and upgrade of motorway N°29 (also part of the Orient/East-Mediterranean corridor), on the section between Koromilia and Krystallopigi, in the Western Macedonia region. Works will result in a reduction by half of the travel time between the two cities and in a significant improvement of road safety.


In July 2015, the European Commission presented the Jobs and Growth Plan for Greece, for the country to fully tap into the potential of the European Structural and Investment Funds.

Over the 2014-2020 financial period, Greece will receive €35 billion of EU funds, including €20 billion from the European Structural and Investment Funds and €15 billion from Agricultural Funds.

Greece benefited from an exceptional frontloading of resources under Cohesion Policy programmes, to help kick-start the selection and implementation of projects on the ground, including the second phases of major projects.

More information

The 2015 Commission Communication "A new start for jobs and growth in Greece"

Cohesion Open Data Platform – Greece

The European Structural and Investment in Greece in 2014-2020



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