|Friday, 20 July 2018|
Athens News Agency: Daily News Bulletin in English, 09-08-19
From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>Wednesday, 19 August 2009 Issue No: 3274
 FinMin: Econ crisis highlights need for reformsPrime Minister Costas Karamanlis met on Tuesday with Economy and Finance Minister Yiannis Papathanassiou at his Maximos Mansion office. After the meeting, Papathanassiou said the ongoing global economic crisis has not left the Greek economy unaffected. The consequences, nevertheless, are milder than those in other economies, although the current crisis has again brought to the surface the Greek economy's structural problems.
"Our duty is to present and implement a programme of reforms aiming for the development and creation of more and better paying positions ... We must do what hasn't been done in the last decade," the FinMin said.
 PASOK letter to Christoforakos' lawyerMain opposition PASOK party secretary Yiannis Ragoussis has addressed a letter to German attorney Stefan Kursawe, the counsel for one-time Siemens Hellas CEO Michalis Christoforakos, requesting all evidence the latter alleges is in his possession and that concerns PASOK.
Ragoussis, in his letter, cites a decision of PASOK party leader George Papandreou, to request the information.
"Following this statement of yours and despite the fact that you refer exclusively to the New Democracy party, which has avoided accepting your aforesaid public invitation, PASOK calls on you, publicly, to respond to your commitment, providing all evidence and proof that your client alleges is in his possession and concerns PASOK and, in any case, everything that has been brought to the attention of German Justice," Ragoussis' letter states.
Ruling New Democracy party Secretary Lefteris Zagoritis, referring to the Siemens affair, responded on Tuesday that "ND will not open a dialogue with the defendant, who must make his plea before justice, to testify about everything and about everybody, so that his allegations can be checked."
Zagoritis also accused the main opposition PASOK party of "wishing to conceal its guilt through correspondence."
He further said that "all are aware of all that has been confessed by one-time high-ranking PASOK cadre Theodoros Tsoukatos regarding the inflow of money from the 'black' funds of Siemens."
Zagoritis further said that "if PASOK wishes to conceal its guilt through correspondence, or it thinks that it will deceive anyone in this way, it is mistaken. Public opinion is aware that during PASOK governments the controversial scheduled contracts and agreements amounting to billions were signed."
 FM sends condolences over Ingushetia attackGreek Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis, the current chair of the Athens' year-long OSCE presidency, on Tuesday expressed her condolences to her Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov over the deadly terrorist attack in Ingushetia on Monday, which resulted to the death of 20 people and the injury of several dozen other individuals.
Bakoyannis extended her condolences to the families of the victims, the government and the Russian people, while sharply condemning the terrorist act.
"The perpetrator of this heinous crime must be arrested and sent before justice," she noted.
 Sioufas letter to counterparts in EU, NATO members on fYRoM 'name issue'Greek Parliament President Dimitris Sioufas has addressed letters to his counterparts in EU and NATO member-states, as well as to the president of the European Parliament, regarding Athens' standing positions over the still unresolved fYRoM "name issue".
Sioufas, a former minister in the previous New Democracy (ND) government, underlined that Greek diplomacy has consistently made every effort to find a mutually acceptable solution within the UN framework to the thorny issue with the neighbouring country, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (fYRoM), a NATO and EU hopeful.
Moreover, he echoed standing Greek policy in citing Athens' support for a composite name with a geographic determinant that will apply for all uses (erga omnes).
In his letter, Sioufas also enclosed a copy of a May 18, 2009 letter sent to US President Barack Obama by some 200 noted academics and scholars from around the world regarding various historical facts vis-ŕ-vis the "name issue" and the neophyte country to Greece's north.
 Matthew Nimetz meets Ambassador Adamantios VassilakisNEW YORK (ANA-MPA/P. Panagiotou)
A written statement by a spokesman for the UN Secretariat revealed that mediator Matthew Nimetz (regarding the issue of the name of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia) met on Tuesday with Greece's representative in the talks, Ambassador Adamantios Vassilakis.
It added that the Secretary General's personal envoy on the "name issue" met with Vassilakis in New York. Nimetz received the Greek government's views on the ideas that he had discussed in Athens in July.
The same statement stressed that Nimetz will be meeting Ambassador Jolevski on Thursday, also in New York, to discuss his government's positions.
 Constantine Karamanlis Institute of Democracy replies to LAOS spokesmanThe "Constantine Karamanlis Institute of Democracy" stressed in an announcement on Tuesday, referring to statements by a spokesman for the Popular Orthodox Rally (LAOS) party on the involvement of associates of the Institute in the Christoforakos affair, that the statements were groundless, false and malicious.
"All that was stated by the spokesman of LAOS on the 'Constantine Karamanlis' Institute of Democracy is groundless, false and malicious," the Institute's statement said.
 Minister tours rail bridge X worksiteTransport and Communications Minister Evripides Stylianidis visited the region of Styrfaka in central Greece on Tuesday, where railway bridge X is under construction.
The minister expressed confidence that work concerning the construction of the new Lianokladi-Domokos rail line will be completed in 2013, with the travel time between Athens to Thessaloniki lowered to 3.5 hours.
The bridge will have a total length of 522 metres and is being built in the region of Styrfaka, 15 kilometres west of the city of Lamia, while its largest part has been completed.
According to Stylianidis, infrastructure along the Lianokladi-Domokos rail section will be delivered by the end of 2011 and signposts, telematics and telecommunications will be completed by the end of 2013.
 Stocks rebound on Tues.Stocks rebounded on Tuesday at the Athens Stock Exchange, with the composite index of the market gaining 1.02 pct to end at 2,333.29 points. Turnover was a very low 101.2 million euros, of which only 4.3 million were block trades.
Sector indices moved mostly upwards with Health (3.88 pct), Mass Media (3.20 pct) and Utilities (2.80 pct) posting the biggest percentage gains of the day.
The FTSE 20 index was up by 1.15 pct up, the FTSE 40 index was up 1.31 pct and the FTSE 80 picked up 0.98 percent.
From the stocks moved, 126 ended up, 74 declined and 44 remained unchanged.
Sector indices ended as follows:
Oil & Gas: +0.29%
Personal & Household: +1.24%
Raw Materials: +1.87%
Travel & Leisure: -1.25%
Food & Beverages: +1.01%
Financial Services: -0.18%
The stocks with the highest turnover were OPAP, National Bank, Public Power Corporation (DEH) and Piraeus Bank.
Selected shares from the FTSE/ASE-20 index closed in euros as follows:
Alpha Bank: 9.69
Public Power Corp (PPC): 15.50
HBC Coca Cola: 15.71
Hellenic Petroleum: 7.23
National Bank of Greece: 20.94
EFG Eurobank Ergasias: 9.00
Bank of Piraeus: 9.10
 Foreign Exchange rates - WednesdayReference buying rates per euro released by the European Central Bank:
U.S. dollar 1.421
Pound sterling 0.863
Danish kroner 7.502
Swedish kroner 10.319
Japanese yen 135.19
Swiss franc 1.532
Norwegian kroner 8.742
Canadian dollar 1.573
Australian dollar 1.725
 Police target migrant smuggling gang on SamosPolice on the eastern Aegean island of Samos arrested a total of eight Afghan nationals on Tuesday as part of an ongoing investigation into migrant smuggling gangs using the island as a transit point to mainland Greece and the rest of Europe.
The incident comes three days after another three foreign nationals were arrested on the island on charges of harbouring 11 illegal migrants in their leased apartment.
In both instances, police uncovered caches of forged travel and public sector documents.
Two out of the eight suspects arrested on Tuesday had also applied for political asylum, authorities said.
All of the suspects are due to face a local prosecutor.
Samos, which lies very close to the opposite Asia Minor coast in the eastern Aegean, is a "favorite" destination of migrant smugglers, operating from Turkey, who attempt to ferry mostly Third World nationals onto Greek and EU territory.
 Cultural season in ThessalonikiSeveral noted cultural exhibitions and concerts will be held in September in Thessaloniki, including the 44th Dimitria events that will open with a symphonic orchestra and pianists Dimitris Sgouros and George Lazaridis. A high-profile exhibition featuring works of the artist Miró will open its doors on Sept. 6.
Spanish tenor Jose Carreras will perform at the Theatro Gaia on Sept. 7.
 Heroin smuggling arrestA 26-year-old Bulgarian national was arrested on Tuesday on the Thessaloniki-Serres highway on drug smuggling charges. Police reportedly discovered more than a kilo of heroin in the man's vehicle.
 French tourist in critical condition with flu symptomsA 53-year-old French national remained in critical condition on Tuesday in a western Greece hospital, suffering from symptoms resembling the H1N1 flu, medical staff at the Rio hospital said.
The man, who arrived in Greece on holiday, is being treated in the hospital ICU.
 Fair on WednesdayFair weather and northerly winds are forecast in most parts of the country on Wednesday, with wind velocity reaching 2-7 beaufort. Temperatures will range between 16C and 36C. Fair in Athens, with northerly 4-7 beaufort winds and temperatures ranging from 23C to 34C. Slightly cloudy in Thessaloniki, with temperatures ranging from 22C to 33C.
 The Tuesday edition of Athens' dailies at a glanceA surprise decision by Germany's constitutional court to postpone the extradition of former Siemens Hellas CEO Michalis Christoforakos from Germany to Greece dominated the headlines on Tuesday in Athens' newspapers.
ADESMEFTOS TYPOS: "Interior minister briefs PM Karamanlis on a series of ministerial initiatives".
APOGEVMATINI: "Early elections a midsummer night's dream".
AVGHI: "German court ruling to postpone Christoforakos extradition brings relief to two major parties".
AVRIANI: "All German multinationals bribe parties and politicians".
ELEFTHERI ORA: "Constitiutional court of Germany postpones Christoforakos' extradition".
ELEFTHEROS: "Crucial negotiations start on Tuesday in New York on Fyrom name issue".
ELEFTHEROTYPIA: "Government left with the handcuffs - Christoforakos' arrival cancelled".
ESTIA: "Why an integrated tax system is best solution".
ETHNOS: "Christoforakos slipped away again".
KATHIMERINI: "Sudden postponement of Christoforakos' extradition".
LOGOS: "Christoforakos' 'dribble' - Extradition postponed".
NIKI: "Bounced checks skyrocket and reached 2 billion euros".
RIZOSPASTIS: "Solid answer to EU's anti-communist campaign".
TA NEA: "Greetings from Munich..."
VIMA: "Germans are the regulators - Christoforakos' extradition postponed - Government's plans reversed".
VRADYNI: «No to early elections, yes to changes".
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