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Athens News Agency: Daily News Bulletin in English, 97-08-05

Athens News Agency: Daily News Bulletin in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Greek Press & Information Office, Ottawa Canada <grnewsca@sympatico.ca>

ATHENS NEWS AGENCY BULLETIN (No 1255), August 5, 1997

Greek Press & Information Office
Ottawa, Canada
E-Mail Address: grnewsca@sympatico.ca


CONTENTS

  • [01] Simitis talks on the importance of the continental shelf
  • [02] ND terms Turkish premier's claims as 'outrageous'
  • [03] Government delegation to Albania
  • [04] Kranidiotis statements
  • [05] Gov't spokesman on Gizikis statement
  • [06] Athens '97 world athletics championships
  • [07] More countries earn their first golds
  • [08] Freeman wins women's 400 meters title
  • [09] Kasparkova wins women's triple jump title
  • [10] Diagana wins men's 400 meters hurdle title
  • [11] Braun recaptures heptathlon title
  • [12] US defending champion secures place in 400m final
  • [13] Greece's Papakostas qualifies for high jump final
  • [14] Olympic champion eliminated from high jump competition
  • [15] Medals table
  • [16] Athens '97 director rebuffs criticism by IAAF president
  • [17] President Stephanopoulos visits Olympic stadium
  • [18] IAAF's highest distinction awarded to President Stephanopoulos
  • [19] Prince Albert, five more IOC members in Greece
  • [20] New traffic law to go into effect
  • [21] Protection measures for Seikh Sou forest
  • [22] Education reforms have created havoc, ND claims
  • [23] EOT chief clarifies role of state funding in two tourism projects
  • [24] Turkish delegation in Mytilene
  • [25] US dollar hits 291.43 drachmas, posts new record
  • [26] Greek equities slip in flaccid trade
  • [27] Tax commandos raid northern Greek tourism firms
  • [28] Greek finance ministry to release tax blacklist
  • [29] Greece may launch inflation-linked tax scale
  • [30] Greek tax revenue on target, minister says
  • [31] Greece to attend lingerie salon in Paris, Jan. '98

  • [01] Simitis talks on the importance of the continental shelf

    Athens, 5/8/1997 (ANA)

    The "most substantial" difference between Greece and Turkey is the Aegean continental shelf, Prime Minister Costas Simitis said, calling on Ankara either to take the Imia islet issue to the International Court at The Hague or abandon its claims.

    In an exclusive interview to the US magazine "Newsweek" dated August 11, Premier Simitis refers mostly to Greek-Turkish relations and the Cyprus issue.

    Following is the full interview:

    Do you see Greek-Turkish relations improving after the Madrid Communiqui, the nonaggression pact signed by the two countries at last month's NATO summit?

    "In Madrid, Turkey and Greece made a declaration that no threats of war or use of force will be made and that differences will be settled peacefully. This is a tremendous step: we want to follow up on that. We must find a solution to the most substantial difference that we have with Turkey -- the continental shelf."

    Why is delineating the extent of the continental shelf from Greece's coastline so crucial?

    "In the continental shelf you can exploit minerals. Probably there is oil."

    Are you thinking of reducing your arms buildup as a result of the communiqui?

    "We will continue arms purchases because since 1985 Turkey has considerably increased its armament -- we are at a disadvantage."

    Do you favor confidence-building measures between Greece and Turkey, such as a hot line between the two militaries?

    "Yes, we are in favor of them. We have made two proposals not accepted by Turkey. First, no military exercises in the Aegean Sea during the summer months. The second is the monitoring of military flights over the Aegean by NATO."

    Do you expect a breakthrough over the disputed Aegean Sea island of Imia/Kardak?

    "I hope there is a breakthrough. I need a statement from the Turks that they will refer the matter to the International Court or to say they don't persist in their claims."

    If the Imia dispute is solved, will Greece release its veto over European Union funds owed Turkey?

    "If [Turkish Prime Minister] Mesut Yilmaz says clearly he refers the matter to the International Court, he will get the money."

    Will you agree to a meeting of Turkish and Greek experts -- the so-called wise men?

    "If an agreement is reached concerning specific procedures to be adhered to, then the 'wise men' will be able to meet."

    Why did the Greek Cypriots escalate the arms race by purchasing missiles from Russia?

    "On the Turkish side of Cyprus there are about 50,000 Turkish soldiers. And there is a threat that they will occupy the whole of the island. So after 23 years of Turkish occupation of part of Cyprus, I think the Greeks have the right to buy the arms necessary to counter such an invasion."

    Does the success of your relations with Turkey depend on resolving the Cyprus issue?

    "There are two different subjects: Greek-Turkey relations and the Cyprus question. The Greek-Turkey relations are a Greek-Turkish matter. The Cyprus problem is an international problem. It concerns a third state, and the problem is the foreign occupation of that state. Naturally, the solution of the Cyprus problem will create a better climate for Greek-Turkish relations. But they are not connected."

    Will Greece veto the admission of Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic to the EU if Cyprus is not admitted?

    "It's too early to say. I will use all possible means in the European Union [to support Cyprus]."

    Do you think Turkey should be in the EU?

    "Turkey cannot be a member of the EU with open problems in the Aegean and on Cyprus."

    Do you have any impressions of Yilmaz? Surely you prefer him to [former prime minister] Necmettin Erbakan and his Islamist Refah party?

    "I'm not so sure. Mr. Erbakan was not interested in the Aegean. The Islamists basically wanted Turkey to play a prime role in Asia among the Muslim countries there. So they were not so interested in the Aegean and Cyprus."

    In an introduction to the interview headlined "A Tremendous Step -- What Greece's Simitis wants from Turkey", the magazine said that following 18 months in office, Mr. Simitis "has done away with the anti-American stance that prevailed under legendary former prime minister Andreas Papandreou. Today the professor of law is working with the United States to settle his country's most pressing problem -- relations with neighbor Turkey".

    [02] ND terms Turkish premier's claims as 'outrageous'

    Athens, 5/8/1997 (ANA)

    The main opposition New Democracy (ND) party yesterday described as "outrageous" statements by Turkish Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz who claimed that international law could not be applied in the Aegean Sea.

    "These statements illustrate once again that Turkey remains incurably provocative and intransigent," ND spokesman Aris Spiliotopoulos said.

    "The Turkish premier is interpreting the Madrid joint communiqui in his own way and in effect disputing it," he added.

    Prime Minister Costas Simitis and Turkish President Suleyman Demirel signed a joint communiqui on Greek-Turkish relations at the recent NATO summit in Madrid.

    The ND spokesman noted that Mr. Yilmaz had made the statement at the very same time that Mr. Simitis was talking about compromise and trying to convince public opinion that the strategy of the neighboring country had changed. Pol. An. reaction Yilmaz's statements, according to which the region of the Aegean Sea is a very special case making it impossible for International Law to be implemented, are no surprise to Political Spring (Pol. An.) party leader Antonis Samaras.

    Mr. Samaras said that since Greece, through the signing of the "Madrid text" by Mr. Simitis, had accepted that Turkey had vital interests in the Aegean, he could not see the reason why the Turkish prime minister could not regard such interests to be beyond the scope of International Law regulations.

    [03] Government delegation to Albania

    Athens, 5/8/1997 (ANA)

    A seven-member government delegation headed by Foreign Minister Theodoros Pangalos leaves for Tirana today in an effort to place Greek-Albanian relations on a new footing following recent general elections in the neighboring country.

    Foreign Under-secretary Yiannos Kranidiotis, who is part of the delegation, told ANA yesterday the success of this visit would constitute a landmark in the history of Greek-Albanian relations.

    It will be the first visit by a foreign minister to Tirana since the general elections in June and comes just five days after the international community agreed at a meeting in Rome to provide economic aid to Albania.

    The one-day meeting was attended by delegations from 35 countries and international organizations and will be followed by a larger conference on Albania's future again in Italy sometime in the autumn.

    Among the issues to be discussed between the government of Fatos Nano and the Greek delegation are the dispatch of advisers and equipment for the reorganization of the Albanian army, the guarding of the common border also on the Albanian side and the liberalization of education through the granting of permits for the operation of private schools.

    The Greek delegation is also expected to confirm Athens' intention to expedite a promised loan of 20 million dollars and its continued support within the European Union for the granting of Community economic assistance to Albania.

    Lastly, the two sides will exchange the relevant diplomatic notes for the entry into force of the agreement signed providing for the seasonal employment of Albanians in Greece.

    At the same time, there is expected to be a broad discussion about the issue of illegal immigrants in Greece.

    In addition to Mr. Pangalos, participating in the Greek delegation will be Public Order Minister George Romeos, National Defense Under-secretary Dimitris Apostolakis, Foreign Under-secretary Yiannos Kranidiotis, National Economy Under-secretary Alexandros Baltas, Public Works Under-secretary Dimitris Verelis and Labor Under-secretary Christos Protopappas.

    Speaking in Thessaloniki, National Defense Minister Akis Tsohatzopoulos described as "a good beginning" the delegation's visit to Albania today.

    "It is perfectly natural that a Greek government delegation should visit and talk with our neighbors, for whom we have the best feelings and with whom we maintain relations of long-standing friendship and economic, social and cultural co-operation," Mr. Tsohatzopoulos said, replying to reporters questions.

    [04] Kranidiotis statements

    Athens, 5/8/1997 (ANA)

    In statements to ANA, Foreign Under-secretary Kranidiotis said the visit "underlines the high priority attributed by both sides to the substantive strengthening of relations between them, and will give us the opportunity to express our interest in the security and consolidation of the rights of the Greek minority, which was tried hard, like the rest of the Albanian people, during the recent crisis".

    He added that the visit will also provide the opportunity to the participating ministers to discuss with their Albanian counterparts issues such as the status of Albanian workers in Greece, boosting police co-operation, the technical details regarding the provision of a $20 million loan to the Albanian central bank, and the promotion of military co-operation agreements. "We shall also have the possibility of exchanging views on determining those sectors in the program for restructuring the country, in which the Albanian government would desire our country's assistance for the provision of technical and economic aid," he said.

    "Greece is willing to continue, both bilaterally, and in the framework of international organizations, the policy of supporting Albania, boosting its European orientation and strengthening its relations with NATO," he added.

    "For all these reasons, I believe that the success of this visit will constitute a landmark in the history of Greek-Albanian relations," Mr. Kranidiotis concluded.

    The Greek delegation is returning to Athens late this afternoon.

    [05] Gov't spokesman on Gizikis statement

    Athens, 5/8/1997 (ANA)

    Commenting on a statement by Phaedon Gizikis, president of the military junta then ruling Greece, that he had personally ordered the 1974 coup in Cyprus against Archbishop Makarios, acting government spokesman Yiannis Nikolaou said "those responsible for the tragedy in Cyprus had been definitely and irrevocably convicted in the conscience of the Greek people".

    The spokesman added "that the ghosts of the past are in no position to distract our attention from focusing on the present and future". He said the Greek and Cypriot governments were closely working together to achieve a just and viable solution of the Cyprus issue.

    [06] Athens '97 world athletics championships

    Athens, 5/8/1997 (ANA)

    [07] More countries earn their first golds

    Australia, the Czech Republic and France got their first gold medals in yesterday's third day of the Athens '97 World Athletics Championships, while Germany added another one. Silver medals went to Jamaica, Romania, South Africa and Britain, while the United States managed two bronze medals, adding to its leading position in the overall ratings. The Ukraine and Lithuania won the remaining two bronzes.

    [08] Freeman wins women's 400 meters title

    Australian Cathy Freeman won the women's 400 meters gold medal on the third day of the world championships yesterday, with a time of 49.77 seconds.

    Sandie Richards of Jamaica took the silver (49.79) and American Jearl Miles-Clark the bronze (49.90).

    [09] Kasparkova wins women's triple jump title

    Czech Sarka Kasparkova won the world women's triple jump gold medal (15.20 meters).

    Rodica Mateescu of Romania took the silver (15.16) and Ukrainian Yelena Govorova the bronze (14.67).

    Greece's Olga Vasdeki came fourth, breaking the Panhellenic record with her 14.62.

    [10] Diagana wins men's 400 meters hurdle title

    Frenchman Stephane Diagana won the world men's 400 meters hurdles gold medal (47.70).

    Llewellyn Herbert of South Africa took the silver (47.86) and American Bryan Bronson the bronze (47.88).

    [11] Braun recaptures heptathlon title

    Germany's Sabine Braun recaptured the world heptathlon title after leading the competition from start to finish, totaling 6,739 points.

    Denise Lewis of Britain took the silver (6,654) and Lithuanian Remigia Nazaroviene the bronze (6,566).

    [12] US defending champion secures place in 400m final

    Double Olympic champion Michael Johnson, who was given a wild card to compete in Athens '97, secured a place in the final of the 400 meters yesterday after almost crashing out in an earlier qualifying round because of a badly-judged finish.

    The American defending champion, set a fast pace in the first 300 meters before relaxing in the home straight to win his semifinal in 44.37 seconds and move comfortably into today's final.

    Compatriot Jerome Young finished second, Uganda's Olympic bronze medallist Davis Kamoga third and Britain's Iwan Thomas fourth, taking the other places in the final from the second heat.

    Johnson was almost eliminated in the second round on Sunday after he misjudged the final meters of a heat and failed to qualify directly for the next round as one of the top three finishers. He eventually scraped through as one of the four fastest losers.

    [13] Greece's Papakostas qualifies for high jump final

    Greek champion Lambros Papakostas secured a place in the high jump finals yesterday. He cleared the 2.28 meters qualifying mark in his second attempt.

    [14] Olympic champion eliminated from high jump competition

    American Charles Austin, an Olympic champion, was eliminated from the world championships high jump competition yesterday after failing to clear 2.28 meters. Austin, who won the Olympic title last year with 2.39 meters, needed treatment to an injury during the qualifying round and could manage no better that 2.26 meters.

    [15] Medals table

    Medals table after the third day of competition at the World Athletics Championships yesterday:

    United States: 2 gold, 1 silver, 3 bronze; Germany: 2 gold, 1 bronze; Ukraine: 1 gold, 2 silver, 1 bronze; Australia: 1 gold; Czech Republic: 1 gold; France: 1 gold; Mexico: 1 gold; Russia: 1 silver, 1 bronze; Canada: 1 silver; Britain: 1 silver; Jamaica: 1 silver; Romania: 1 silver; South Africa: 1 silver; Bahamas: 1 bronze; Belarus: 1 bronze; Lithuania: 1 bronze.

    [16] Athens '97 director rebuffs criticism by IAAF president

    Athens, 5/8/1997 (ANA)

    The Director of the Athens '97 World Athletics Championships, Vangelis Savramis, yesterday rebuffed criticism by International Amateur Athletic Federation (IAAF) President Primo Nebiolo that low attendance on Saturday, opening day of the sports events pro per, was possibly due to inadequate prior promotion.

    "I prefer a stadium full of sports fans rather than soldiers," Mr. Savramis said, hinting at the practice adopted for boosting attendance at the 2nd World Championship in Rome in 1987.

    "The soldiers are for the country's defense," he added.

    Mr. Savramis further said he had proposed to the IAAF president a change in the dates for the Games, arguing that most people in the Athens conurbation are away on holiday during the first 10 days of August, but that he had argued instead for a promotion campaign using loudspeakers. Nebiolo, who is honorary president of the Rome 2004 Olympic Bid Organizing Committee -an event for which Athens is also competing- was quoted by Reuters yesterday as saying, "there had maybe not been a great campaign of promotion," and "maybe because it was Saturday, people in Athens go to the sea. I hope for the next few days that they will not go to the sea. They have the sea all year. They can forget the sea for one week".

    Mr. Savramis referred to expediencies on the part of the foreign press and Mr. Nebiolo himself, claiming they were trying to create problems for the organizers on the issue of the attendance.

    Attendance at the Athens Olympic Stadium was markedly up on Sunday night and last night, estimated at more than 35,000.

    President of the Greek Olympic Committee Lambis Nicolaou was also quoted by Reuters as saying that "six days would have been better for the World Championship. Nine days is too long".

    [17] President Stephanopoulos visits Olympic stadium

    Athens, 5/8/1997 (ANA)

    President of the Republic Kostis Stephanopoulos visited the Olympic stadium, site of the Athens '97 World Championships, yesterday evening.

    He was met by Sports Under-secretary Andreas Fouras, president of the Hellenic Olympic Committee Lambis Nicolaou and Primo Nebiolo, president of the International Amateur Athletics Federation (IAAF) under which the championships are being held.

    [18] IAAF's highest distinction awarded to President Stephanopoulos

    Athens, 5/8/1997 (ANA)

    The President of the International Amateur Athletics Federation (IAAF) Dr. Primo Nebiolo last night awarded President Costis Stephanopoulos with the highest IAAF distinction of the Gold Medal of Honor.

    President Stephanopoulos then presented Dr. Nebiolo with the medal of the Commander of the Order of Honor at a special ceremony held at the presidential mansion.

    Mr. Stephanopoulos hosted a reception in honor of the organizers of the World Athletics Championships and the members of the IAAF and IOC currently in Athens.

    [19] Prince Albert, five more IOC members in Greece

    Athens, 5/8/1997 (ANA)

    Prince Albert of Monaco is visiting Athens as guest of the International Amateur Athletics Federation (IAAF), currently hosting the World Athletics Championships in Athens, to be briefed on the Athens bid for the 2004 Olympic Games and tour the sports facilities.

    In relation to the Athens bid, the 2004 committee briefed four visiting members of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) on the Greek portfolio.

    The five, Richard Gosper (Australia), Austin Seely (Barbados), Peter Talberg (Finland), Patrick Hickey (Ireland) and Anthony Vrdoliac (Croatia) visited sports facilities and planted olive trees with their name in the special IOC grove.

    [20] New traffic law to go into effect

    Athens, 5/8/1997 (ANA)

    A tougher traffic law drafted by the government is calling for heavier fines for people driving under the influence of alcohol and taking driving exams again for offenders.

    Preliminary work on the draft bill has been completed, and has been submitted to Transport Under-secretary Manolis Loukakis for approval.

    The code calls for the obligatory use of safety belts for everyone except people under 1.5 meters tall, pregnant women, taxi drivers and drivers of deliveries within the city radius.

    It also calls for special protection for children up to 12 years of age, and the use of traffic policemen for school crossings.

    It is expected that if passed, the new law will go into effect this autumn.

    [21] Protection measures for Seikh Sou forest

    Athens, 5/8/1997 (ANA)

    The forest of Seikh Sou near Thessaloniki, a great part of which was destroyed by fire on July 6, has been declared an "area under constant surveillance" by Defense Minister Akis Tsohatzopoulos.

    Speaking in the northern city yesterday, the minister declared the government's commitment to maintain the area as a public space and not to permit any of it to be built on.

    The forest will be regularly photographed from the air by the Third Army and the Army Geographical Service. Mr. Tsohatzopoulos was speaking at a meeting at the Thessaloniki Officers' Club during a presentation of the first aerial photographs of the region.

    Minister for Macedonia and Thrace Philippos Petsalnikos said that "not even a single brick" would be allowed in the region.

    He added that erosion and flood prevention reports on the region would be ready by the end of September.

    [22] Education reforms have created havoc, ND claims

    Athens, 5/8/1997 (ANA)

    The main opposition New Democracy (ND) party, which is opposed to reforms in the country's educational system announced last week by Education Minister Gerassimos Arsenis, said yesterday the announced reforms have created havoc amongst teachers and students.

    ND press spokesman Aris Spiliotopoulos in a statement yesterday said the announced measures were unsuccessful "old recipes" that have proven impossible to implement. The spokesman also cast doubt on whether the reforms, if implemented, would actually contribute to upgrading education in general.

    Commenting also on the educational reforms, the Coalition of the Left and Progress (Synaspismos) warned of the move's failure since the announcement was irresponsibly made during the holiday period when most people are away. An announcement by the party said Synaspismos favored a free access to tertiary and technical education, but expressed fears over the establishment of "multi-tier studies" which would have an adverse effect on the comprehensive nature of tertiary education.

    Unlike other opposition parties, however, the Political Spring party voiced its support to the educational reforms. A statement said the announced reforms by the government, even though belatedly, could improve today's poor conditions in the educational system.

    [23] EOT chief clarifies role of state funding in two tourism projects

    Athens, 5/8/1997 (ANA)

    The Political Spring said opposition criticism was too hasty in rejecting the government's reforms. The government does not plan to subsidize the building of two holiday resorts by 85 per cent, and rumors to this effect are entirely "fictitious", Hellenic Tourism Organization (EOT) secretary general Nikos Skoulas said yesterday.

    He was replying to statements by the Chamber of Hoteliers of Greece and the National Federation of Hoteliers who claimed that the government's participation in two projects would be high.

    Mr. Skoulas said that following an auction, EOT had approved two projects, one in Messinia and another in Aetoloakarnania prefectures, which would include luxury hotel complexes, infrastructural works, sports centers, congress halls, golf fields, and shopping malls among others.

    The Messinia proposal, a consortium of Greek-American businessmen headed by shipowner V. Konstantakopoulos, is worth 40.5 billion drachmas and includes an area of 5.6 hectares in total near Romanos and Pylos.

    This project has been included in the second Delors package, but on condition of approval by the Greek Parliament (because it exceeds 25 billion drachmas). The state will participate in the project with 27 per cent (14.85 per cent from the European Community and 12.15 per cent from state funds).

    Investors have been asked to raise their participation from 30 per cent to 40 per cent, Mr. Skoulas said.

    The second project is at Mytikas, near Astakos, funded by businessman N. Hionis and the Meton, ETEP and Domika Erga construction companies. It is worth 45 billion drachmas but did not qualify for EC funds because the owner capital is very low, he said.

    Mr. Skoulas noted that according to a law on such projects (2234/94), the state may not participate in funding with over 25 per cent for hotels and over 35 per cent for other special facilities and infrastructure.

    Expressing his regret about the hoteliers' criticism, Mr. Skoulas said that internal conflicts in this case "upset the unity of Greek tourism and are an obstacle to joint efforts for its recovery, at a time it is experiencing a crisis of identity and competitiveness".

    [24] Turkish delegation in Mytilene

    Athens, 5/8/1997 (ANA)

    A delegation from the Chamber of Commerce of the Turkish town of Pergamum will visit Mytilene on Thursday within the framework of an initiative of Lesbos Prefecture to improve relations between the island and the opposite Turkish coast.

    The visit follows a highly successful concert given by the Greek Radio and Television (ERT 3) orchestra in Pergamum as part of the same initiative.

    Hospitality to the Turkish visitors will be extended for two days by the company "Hellenic Salt Works" and Lesbos Prefecture.

    During their stay, they will be shown round the "Hellenic Salt Works" installations and have meetings with their chamber counterparts as well as with business people on the island.

    [25] US dollar hits 291.43 drachmas, posts new record

    Athens, 5/8/1997 (ANA)

    The US dollar resumed its upward spiral on international markets yesterday, hitting an all-time high of 291.43 drachmas domestically at the central bank's fix.

    The dollar's jump was 3.55 drachmas, or 1.23 percent up on Friday's daily fix at the Bank of Greece.

    The greenback has gained 17.73 percent against the Greek currency since the beginning of 1997.

    Commercial banks on Tuesday will sell the dollar at 295.301 drachmas.

    On European markets, the greenback fluctuated around 1.8715 German marks.

    Investors and monetary authorities worldwide are waiting to see if the Bundesbank moves to prop up the flagging mark.

    If the German central bank fails to intervene in foreign currency markets, it is likely to adjust its base rates in order to shield the mark, which is currently at its lowest level for eight years, traders said.

    Technical analysts see the dollar moving in a range of 1.90-2.0 marks until the end of the year.

    [26] Greek equities slip in flaccid trade

    Athens, 5/8/1997 (ANA)

    Greek stocks slipped to end 0.29 percent down in scant, lackluster trade yesterday, with the market gradually losing sight of resistance at 1,600 points. The Athens general share index finished at 1,586.85 points from 1,591.45 in the previous session and turnover slumped to a meager 7.5 billion drachmas from 13.6 billion.

    The parallel market for smaller cap stocks was perky, closing 1.01 percent higher.

    Sector indices ended mixed. Banks edged down 0.44 percent, Insurance fell 0.38 percent, Investment dropped 0.88 percent, Leasing rose 0.67 percent, Industrials inched down 0.04 percent, Construction nose-dived 1.83 percent, Miscellaneous jumped 1.33 percent and Holding increased 1.09 percent.

    State-run Hellenic Telecommunications Organization lost 30 drachmas to finish at 6,270 drachmas from 6,300 drachmas.

    The dollar set a new all-time high against the drachma to close at 291.43 drachmas at the central bank's daily fix, up 3.55 drachmas on Friday's fix. Declines outstripped advances at 106 to 86 with 38 shares remaining unchanged of 228 traded.

    The day's highest percentage gainers were Bank of Attica, General Trade (common and preferred) and Klonatex, which all closed at or near the eight percent upper volatility limit.

    The biggest percentage losers were General Warehouses (common), Boutaris (preferred), AEGEK (common) and GEKAT.

    [27] Tax commandos raid northern Greek tourism firms

    Athens, 5/8/1997 (ANA)

    Greek finance ministry crime squads yesterday launched a month of raids on northern tourism enterprises in order to catch tax evaders and profiteers.

    The specialist teams will carry out spot checks on a 24-hour basis on hotels, rented rooms, restaurants, cafes, night clubs, bars and souvenir stores.

    Violations the authorities are seeking include fraudulent tax data, contracts and hotel guest records.

    The move is aimed at protecting consumers and tourists as well as ensuring tax data is not being falsified.

    [28] Greek finance ministry to release tax blacklist

    Athens, 5/8/1997 (ANA)

    Greece's finance ministry is to release a blacklist in August of around 500,000 businesses guilty of issuing or accepting fake invoices in a bid to curb rampant tax evasion, Finance Under-secretary George Drys said yesterday.

    The ministry had compiled two registers - one each for issuers and receivers of the fraudulent documents - that is shortly due to be computerized, Mr. Drys told a news conference.

    Companies will eventually have on-line access to the data, enabling them to check whether the firm they are dealing with has been found guilty of making out falsified invoices for goods or services.

    So far the ministry has completed the first phase of its project to match issuers and recipients of fake invoices, which covers documents made out in 1994. Remaining lists up to the present should be completed by the end of 1997, Mr. Drys said.

    In 1994 tax authorities received financial data from 627,511 taxpayers out of 1,113,010, or only 56.36 percent of the total. The remaining 485,699 taxpayers who failed to submit data will pay a total of 43 billion drachmas in fines, he said.

    Of taxpayers who issued invoices, only 70,000, or 11.15 percent submitted data in disc form, and 60,000 of the same group provided inaccurate data, Mr. Drys said.

    [29] Greece may launch inflation-linked tax scale

    Athens, 5/8/1997 (ANA)

    Greece may consider introducing a tax scale that is index-linked to inflation following months of pressure by trade unions.

    Finance Under-secretary George Drys said index-linked brackets for income tax would be debated in talks the government is currently holding with employers and unions on reforming the labor market and social insurance system.

    Replying to a reporter's question, Mr. Drys said index-linked brackets would be expensive, costing the state around 20 billion drachmas each.

    [30] Greek tax revenue on target, minister says

    Athens, 5/8/1997 (ANA)

    Finance Minister George Drys yesterday said data his ministry had so far compiled on tax revenue collected in July showed a rise of more than 15.6 percent, meeting government targets.

    The increase in revenue was likely to total around 16 percent, Mr. Drys told a news conference.

    [31] Greece to attend lingerie salon in Paris, Jan. '98

    Athens, 5/8/1997 (ANA)

    Greece will attend the Salon International de la Lingerie, on lingerie and swimsuits, taking place in Paris from January 23 to 26, 1998. The Greek participation will be organized here by the Export Promotion Organization (OPE), which said in an announcement that at least 10 businesses are expected to participate. For more information, interested parties may contact OPE until September 1, on tel. 9982.229.

    End of English language section.


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