Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis has announced that the victims devastated by the massive fires that ravaged the island of Evia for nine days would soon be receiving financial aid.
Mitsotakis has called upon those residents and businesses of Evia impacted by the fires to apply online at arogi.gov.gr for financial support.
“The arogi.gov.gr platform will enable those who have been affected with an application to immediately secure the first support resources so that they can start rebuilding their homes or businesses,” he said, reassuring the people of Evia that the government would be responsible for damage restoration and the clearing of debris.
The news was announced by Mitsotakis of Wednesday following his meeting with Central Greece Regional Governor Fanis Spanos, National Reconstruction Committee Chief Stavros Beno, and the mayors of the areas worst hit by the fires including Mandoudi, Limni, Agia Anna and Istiaia-Edipsos.
“Stavros Beno and I had the first meeting of the Committee that will undertake to make the proposals for the productive reconstruction of Evia,” said Misotakis.
“We need to plan the next day with a holistic approach, taking advantage of the significant comparative advantages of the place.”
Με τον Σταύρο Μπένο είχαμε την πρώτη συνεδρίαση της Επιτροπής που θα αναλάβει να κάνει τις προτάσεις για την παραγωγική ανασυγκρότηση της β. Εύβοιας. Πρέπει να σχεδιάσουμε την επόμενη ημέρα με μια ολιστική προσέγγιση, αξιοποιώντας τα σημαντικά συγκριτικά πλεονεκτήματα του τόπου. pic.twitter.com/zUc4PQedh2
— Prime Minister GR (@PrimeministerGR) August 18, 2021
After the meeting, Fanis Spanos announced seven “absolutely necessary” steps for the reconstruction of Northern Evia that will focus on the “needs and dreams of the local community” and will facilitate rebuilding from the bottom up.
According to Spanos, the seven steps include: investigations to find and prosecute the arsonists responsible for the fires; quick and red tape-free compensation to the victims; immediate works for flood protection and regeneration of the forest; special support for resin collectors and early retirement plans for elderly professionals; targeted aid for agriculture and livestock, tourism, beekeeping, olive oil and fig industries; re-construction of road networks to facilitate access to Northern Evia; awarding jurisdiction of regeneration and reconstruction works to local administration and communities.
“It is vital we act holistically,” said Beno, outlining immediate actions to assess the damage and a reconstruction plan that entails the development of urban planning schemes, a master plan for forest regeneration, studies on critical transport infrastructure and networks, human resources, the agri-food sector development, new tourism identity, an island ‘green’ zone, digital transition and innovation.
The reconstruction of Evia is to be rolled out by the government in three parts, including the provision of immediate financial relief to those affected; restoration of the damage caused by the fire; and long-term planning for regeneration of the area.