The oil refineries will be out of the picture before the decade is out based on a decision during a meeting at the Presidential Palace.
President Nicos Anastasiades chaired a meeting on Tuesday evening where Energy Minister Giorgos Lakkotrypis spoke of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to be signed by all parties involved. The agreement would be a roadmap leading to the total removal of the oil tanks in the area by the Larnaca port.
Liquified gas installations are to be removed by 2019 and oil storage tanks by 2020, according to the plan which will be closely monitored with checks every three months at both administrative and political levels.
Larnaca mayor Andreas Vyras said this was the first time that such serious work had be done on the issue, which has been a thorny and complicated topic for years.
This is not the first time an extension has been given to companies to remove their installations, with the Larnaca municipality speaking out publicly against delays.
Vyras had been asking for a long time for a meeting among all parties involved, telling the media at times that he wanted the companies “gone yesterday”.
Company representatives and government officials were also present at the meeting with the president and a number of ministers.