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BlackRock puts €300M Athens mall plan on ice

U.S.-based investment manager BlackRock Inc. is halting plans for the €300 million development of a mall in Athens just a few weeks before a building permit for the project was expected to be issued, Kathimerini reported.

The company decided to suspend its plans for the 55,000-square meter Academy Gardens shopping and entertainment complex in the city's Akadimia Platonos neighborhood for at least a few years amid continued economic and political risks in Greece, as well as an uncertain international environment, among other factors, the publication said, citing Artume, the BlackRock vehicle responsible for the project's implementation.

Artume has already spent about €120 million on the project, of which €90 million was used to acquire and clear the land, with the remaining used to cover taxes, social security contributions and research.

The company had been in talks with constructions groups including Ellaktor SA and LAMDA Development SA for the project, according to the Oct. 17 report.