In two articles printed in Público this week* by reporter Paulo Curado, the facts behind the funding for the Algarve’s International Autodrome have become less opaque on the seventh anniversary of the launch of the project.
The reign of Portimão's former mayor Manuel da Luz was noted for its reckless overspending and use of council owned company Portimão Urbis in underhand, corrupt and expensive schemes which still are being investigated by police.
Pestana is to manage the hotel at the Algarve’s International Autodrome when the five star unit opens in the second half of 2015.
When Parkalgar was forced into applying for an ultimately successful Special Revitalisation Process to stave off bankruptcy, €10 million was set aside to pay local building company Bemposta to complete the stalled hotel project.
Saffron VIP, marketing company for the apartments at the International Autodrome, Portimão, went bust and any knowledge of its deal with apartment investors is denied by Parkalgar’s Paulo Pinheiro.
Investors paid deposits for the apartments under an agreement with Saffron VIP that stipulated that the company would buy back the Vista de Falcao and Vista das Ondas apartments on their completion, with any profit being returned to investors, and then sold on by Saffron VIP into fractional ownership. Then it closed.
The Janela Aberta 21, Sustainable Development Education Centre based in Monchique has submitted an application to the 'Visions on Innovation for Sustainable Tourism Awards' citing the Autódromo do Algarve as an example of bad practice and environmentally damaging economic activity.
In the VISTAwards, good practice is praised and bad practice is damned for those nominated tourism-related, irresponsible businesses running the projects that have been submitted.
Formula 1 boss Bernie Ecclestone has brought an action against Parkalgar, owner operators of the Autodromo do Algarve, for a debt in excess of €3.2 million owed to his company GP2 Ltd. It is the highest current court action, but not the only one against the company which currently faces seventeen court actions for non-payment for goods and services.
Autodromo boss, Paulo Pinheiro, admitted to the existence of court actions, but said that "arrangements have been made with all entities that have complained," leaving "only six or seven cases pending."
The administrator of the Algarve International Circuit (EIA) said today that an agreement was reached with the consortium of creditors that has been pushing for the insolvency of the operating company over claims for the payment of €1.6 million.
"We agreed to pay the last installment in the agreement with the consortium," said a Parkalgar spokesman.
According to a report received from Dunn & Bradstreet, Parkalgar, the founding company of the Algarve International Circuit near Portimão, was officially registered as insolvent earlier this month.
It is not yet known how this effects the recent agreement with some of the race track's major creditors, primarily the consortium made up of Siemens, Ensul Meci and SPIE, but importantly excluding Bernie Ecclestone's GP2 Ltd, which is owed "in excess of €3.2 million."
Autódromo Internacional do Algarve’s owner Parkalgar submitted a last ditch proposal to the Portimão court on 15 June, 2012 to stave off bankruptcy and ruin.
Its Special Revitalization Plan offers the payment of close to 100% of its debt to bankers BCP, a reduction in running costs of €350,000 per year and an eventual payout to unsecured creditors of just 30% of what they are owed.