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Athens News Agency: Daily News Bulletin in English, 09-09-15

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>

Tuesday, 15 September 2009 Issue No: 3297


  • [01] PM Karamanlis addresses representatives of SMEs
  • [02] PASOK leader meets Cyprus President in Nicosia
  • [03] PASOK leader addresses event in memory of Yiannos Kranidiotis
  • [04] "Political memorial" marks 10th anniversary of the death of Yiannos Kranidiotis
  • [05] FM Bakoyannis attends EU General Affairs Council
  • [06] Souflias on PASOK policy
  • [07] ACCI President Mihalos on Papandreou's announcements
  • [08] KKE leader visits Athens Brewery
  • [09] SYN leader Tsipras criticises ND, PASOK policies
  • [10] Disciplinary action against Siemens case magistrate
  • [11] FRONTEX chopper harassed by Turkey during Aegean patrol
  • [12] Greece has to present fiscal cutting measures by October 24, Almunia says
  • [13] KKE on Almunia, economic policy
  • [14] Greek FinMin criticizes PASOK's economic program
  • [15] On Telecoms announces acquisition of Vivodi Telecom
  • [16] Hellenic Sugar Industry reports 38.3 mln euros loss
  • [17] Building production index up 6.1% in Q2
  • [18] DOREKTHESI opens in Anthousa on Sept. 17
  • [19] Stocks end 2.34% down
  • [20] ADEX closing report
  • [21] Greek bond market closing report
  • [22] Foreign Exchange rates - Tuesday
  • [23] First doses of novel influenza virus due in 15 days
  • [24] Man charged with arson in Grammatiko wildfire
  • [25] Two killed in labor accident
  • [26] Greek schools to celebrate UN Int'l Day of Democracy on Sept. 15
  • [27] Two arrested in drug trafficking ring
  • [28] Rainy on Tuesday
  • [29] The Monday edition of Athens ' dailies at a glance Politics

  • [01] PM Karamanlis addresses representatives of SMEs

    Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis addressed representatives of small and medium-size enterprises (SMEs) on Monday evening, outlining the government's work in the sector of SMEs over the past five and a half years, criticisng the main opposition PASOK party, saying that it lacks any plan for the country, while the ruling New Democracy (ND) party does not play with the country's future and places national interest above all and that he had called early elections for this reason.

    Karamanlis criticised PASOK saying the latter's governments bequeathed ND with a huge public debt and, as he said, from 30 percent in 1981 they took it to 100 percent in 2004. The prime minister further said that all that PASOK has announced and promises costs over 10 billion euros and wondered "where will it get the money."

    He went on to say that "as explicit that the crisis and problems are, so vague is the leader of PASOK" and, referring to the main opposition party, he added that "they are living in their own world. They proved this with their announcements in Thessaloniki and for this reason they are dangerous. They are saying that they will do things that cannot be done. It is being proved that they do not know reality. On the one hand they are terming the situation tragic and on the other they are promising things that cost over 10 billion."

    The prime minister said that PASOK was leaving no doubt as to what it will do on two points alone. That it will increase taxes and the public debt, adding that "they would be forced to do this and ithis would have dangerous consequences for the country."

    Karamanlis further stressed that SMEs are currently feeling pressure and mentioned that for ND they constitute the base of the Greek economy and the tissue of economic life.

    He also said that the gpovernment showed strong reflexes from the very beginning of the crisis and recalled the measures that were taken in support of the economy and of employment.

    Karamanlis referred to privatisations carried out and to energy agreements achieved by the government and which serve, as he said, national interests and criticised PASOK of speaking on the one hand of the state regaining control and on the other of renegotiating.

    "They are making innuendos and the president of PASOK claims quite peculiarly that the Burgas-Alexandroupoli agreement supports the interests of the Russians" and further stressed that in PASOK "they have no economic policy plan and for this reason they cannot guarantee the country's future."

    Karamanlis underlined that decisions must be taken now for the day after "so that we can turn the national crisis into a national opportunity" and noted that the government has started a specific strategy to confront the crisis, with its axes being control of public expenditures, cracking down on tax evasion and structural changes.

    Lastly, he accused PASOK of "extorting elections and, consequently, there was the risk of an election period lasting for many months" and assessed that PASOK would create tensions and it would be impossible for the government to complete its task, while concluding by saying that "I rejected extortion and I am asking for a fresh popular mandate." He lastly pointed out that two difficult years lie ahead and difficult decisions are necessary immediately.

    [02] PASOK leader meets Cyprus President in Nicosia

    NICOSIA (ANA-MPA/G. Milionis)

    Main opposition PASOK party leader George Papandreou met here on Monday with Cyprus President Demetris Christofias.

    "I was briefed by the President of the Republic of Cyprus Demetris Christofias on the course of the talks on the Cyprus issue. I thank him especially because it is necessary that we are prepared. If the Greek people so decide we shall soon be in government in Greece," Papandreou said afterwards.

    Papandreou arrived earlier in Cyprus to address an event in memory of PASOK late alternate Foreign Minister Yiannos Kranidiotis killed in a freak plane accident 10 years ago.

    Papandreou also said that "immediate coordination between the two governments is necessary for the achievement of our common goals, particularly in light of the crucial decisions in the European Union in December. Our presence here sends a message in all directions. Greece is again by Cyprus's side, close to the Cypriot people with actions and not with words."

    Cyprus, an EU member-state since 2004, has been divided since 1974 when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third. After Cyprus' accession to the EU Turkey refused to extent its Customs Union to Cyprus, a commitment known as the Ankara Protocol, to open its ports and airports to vessel and aircraft bearing the Cypriot flag and to normalise its relations with the Republic of Cyprus.

    In 2006 the EU decided to freeze eight of the 35 EU-Turkey negotiating chapters due to Ankara's refusal to comply with its EU obligations. The rest of the chapters continue to go ahead, but the eight shall not be concluded until Turkey fulfills its obligations. The EU will assess progress in December.

    [03] PASOK leader addresses event in memory of Yiannos Kranidiotis

    NICOSIA (ANA-MPA/G. Milionis)

    Main opposition PASOK party leader George Papandreou addressed an event held at the University of Cyprus here on Monday evening, organised by the ISTAME (Institute for Strategic and Development Studies) Andreas Papandreou Foundation in memory of Greece's late alternate foreign minister Yiannos Kranidiotis, stressing that "the passing of time consolidates faits accomplis for partitioning" adding "no solution only serves those who have compromised with the partitioning status quo" on the island republic.

    The event was also addressed by Cyprus President Demetris Christofias.

    "We shall never compromise with partitioning, (Cyprus) President Demetris Christofias has stressed the dangers from the perpetuation of the problem," Papandreou further said.

    Papandreou further said that for the PASOK government, "if of course the people make this choice in the (October 4 general) elections, a foreign policy that will be giving once again power and prestige to Greece will be a priority, while the country will intervene in all the major international developments."

    The PASOK leader also said that the PASOK government's foreign policy will be a policy with targets.

    "President Christofias is aware that he has our support in his effort," Papandreou said, adding that for a solution to the issue of Cyprus there must be no outside interventions, pressures, suffocating timetables and arbitration and called on Turkey to leave the Turkish Cypriot community free to negotiate its future so that "we can be led to a solution that will be effective and fully workable of an EU state."

    Papandreou went on to say that "the problem of Cyprus is a problem of invasion and occupation by Turkey and we must remind this" and called for the withdrawal of the Turkish occupation troops, the last wall in Europe to fall and Turkey to fulfill all its commitments as an EU candidate country.

    Papandreou also underlined that "in December a new road map must be set, a new Helsinki" and Turkey will assume clear commitments for a solution to the Cyprus issue.

    On his part, President Christofias said that Cyprus feels the absence of Yiannos Kranidiotis, especially at the present stage of efforts to solve the Cyprus problem and Turkey's EU accession course, adding that, despite of the fact that his life was cut short, Yiannos Kranidiotis sealed the political developments of the '80s and '90s, and established himself as a politician and diplomat, who successfully combined technocratic training with political activity and contemporary European thought.

    President Christofias referred to Yiannos Kranidiotis' instrumental role in Cyprus' EU accession course, and the significant political heritage he left for both Cyprus and Greece. He added that ''the posts Yiannos Kranidiotis was called on to undertake in two very crucial decades for Greece, Cyprus and Europe testify the faith the Greek state, great political leaders of the age and various governments had in him.''

    Fifty-two-year-old Yiannis Kranidiotis, with his son Nicholas and another four persons, were killed during a flight to Romania on the Greek Prime Minister's Falcon jet, in September 1999, when the plane lost altitude.

    Kranidiotis, born in Nicosia in 1947, was an advisor on the Cyprus issue to late Greek Prime Minister Andreas Papandreou from 1981 to 1984, while he also served as Secretary of European Affairs at the Greek Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Deputy Foreign Minister and alternate Foreign Minister of Greece until his death. Kranidiotis was also the author of several books and articles focusing on European, Cypriot and Greek affairs.

    [04] "Political memorial" marks 10th anniversary of the death of Yiannos Kranidiotis

    An event marking the 10th anniversary of the death of PASOK government Alternate Foreign Minister Yiannos Kranidiotis was held Monday by the Hellenic Society of International Law and International Relations.

    The event held in a foreign ministry chamber named after Kranidiotis was addressed by former ministers and MPs who referred to him as the "architect of Cyprus' accession into the EU," describing him as a "cosmopolitan, pro-European and realist politician" who placed the Cyprus issue in a "wider geo-strategic field."

    A statement issued by the foreign ministry underlined that "Yiannos envisioned and supported Cyprus's European course, guided by his conviction that EU accession would make the resolution of the Cyprus problem feasible. That Cyprus's accession could lead to the reunification of the island, within the framework of the European Union, so that all Cypriots - Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots alike - might enjoy the security of the European family. His vision - the vision of a true Cypriot and Greek patriot - was the best investment for a future of progress and development for the Republic of Cyprus Today, we honor the memory of Yiannos Kranidiotis. We are dedicated to the effort to achieve a viable, functional solution to the Cyprus issue - a solution to which Yiannos dedicated his life. We honor his memory, having learned from his thinking - perpetuating his political legacy. The void left by his untimely passing is difficult to fill."

    Kranidiotis, a Greek politician of Cypriot origin who first envisaged Cyprus' entry into the European Union, was killed in a freak accident shortly before midnight on September 14, 1999 when a plane carrying a Greek diplomatic mission to Romania hit an air pocket and dropped from an altitude of 23,000 feet to 6,000 feet before pilots were able to land it safely at the Bucharest airport. A total of six people died in the accident, including Kranidiotis' 25-year-old son.

    [05] FM Bakoyannis attends EU General Affairs Council

    BRUSSELS (ANA-MPA/V. Demiris)

    Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis represented Greece at the European Union's General Affairs Council here on Monday, stressing that "the shortsighted handling of the European Operation for Combatting Illegal Immigration by Turkey is really disappointing," referring to the latest incident of a FRONTEX helicopter being harassed by a Turkish radar.

    Focusing on the issues discussed by the Council, Bakoyannis said that, among other things, the issue of tackling the economic crisis was discussed which is of vital importance for the future of Europe, with emphasis on the issues of employment and the supervision of the monetary system.

    She added that, in this context, at the informal European Council on Thursday an effort will be made to shape an EU position in light of the meeting of the Group of 20 in the United States.

    The foreign minister further said that the Council discussed the institutional issues preoccupying the EU and the changes that the Lisbon Treaty will be bringing about, if everything goes well with its ratification.

    Bakoyannis also met on the sidelines of the Council with Bulgaria's new foreign minister.

    Lastly, replying to the question of her possible candidacy for EU foreign minister, that will be created if the Lisbon Treaty is implemented, Bakoyannis said that it is premature for one to speak of possible candidacies and posts.

    [06] Souflias on PASOK policy

    Environment, Town Planning and Public Works Minister George Souflias lashed out at main opposition PASOK president George Papandreou, following a meeting of ruling New Democracy (ND) party's election committee on Monday, chaired by Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis.

    Referring to the economic policy unveiled by the PASOK leader on Saturday, Souflias accused the latter of resorting to promises rife with vagueness and contradictions.

    Souflias charged that "the pledges made by Papandreou are impossible to implement and even if applied would only hurt the Greek economy."

    He also characterised PASOK's proposals on the state's role in utilities and companies such as Hellenic Telecoms (OTE) and Olympic Airlines (OA) as "old fashioned" and outdated.

    [07] ACCI President Mihalos on Papandreou's announcements

    Athens Chamber of Commerce and Industry (EBEA) President Constantine Mihalos warned on Monday that "businessmen cannot withstand an additional taxation burden combined with tax index increases," referring to the economic policy unveiled by main opposition PASOK leader George Papandreou in his address at Thessaloniki's 74th International Trade Fair (ITF) on Saturday.

    The EBEA president underlined that businessmen "will lose their competitiveness and will be forced to resort to cutbacks to the detriment of employment," adding that "the same goes for the vague announcements made on changes in the sectors of labor and social security."

    Mihalos made the statement in response to a relevant question by a reporter.

    [08] KKE leader visits Athens Brewery

    The people need to put a brake on the storm of anti-popular measures that are coming, with their vote in the October 4 general elections, Communist Party of Greece (KKE) leader Aleka Papariga said on Monday, speaking to workers at the Athens Brewery.

    She said that the two mainstream parties - leading New Democracy (ND) and main opposition PASOK - must lose votes, stressing that those lost votes should not be the result of voter abstention or votes cast for other, smaller parties "which do not exercise opposition", but should instead be case for the KKE.

    Papariga explained that, in speaking of a storm of anti-popular measures, she is referring to the sectors education, health, social welfare, extension of the flexible forms of employment, but also on the national issues, wherever there are "local trouble spots".

    She criticised PASOK leader George Papandreou on the positions he presented on the weekend at the 74th Thessaloniki International Fair (TIF), charging that 90 percent of his proposals aimed at boosting business investments, reduction of insurance premiums, while no mention was made of abolishing the laws that PASOK has voted against in parliament, nor reduction of the retirement ages.

    As for Papandreou's statements on salary increases above the inflation rate, Papariga charged that, for the working people, that translated into "half a coffee per day, since the 700 euros per month will become 708 euros".

    [09] SYN leader Tsipras criticises ND, PASOK policies

    Both main parties have presented economic programmes based on harsh austerity measures that place the greatest burden of the crisis on the economically weakest, while enhancing inequalities in the distribution of wealth in favour of the forces of capital, Coalition of the Left, Movements and Ecology (SYN) party leader Alexis Tsipras said in a press conference on Monday.

    He was commenting on the speeches made at the Thessaloniki International Fair (TIF) during the previous two weekends by Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis and main opposition PASOK leader George Papandreou, respectively.

    Questioned about the possibility of post-election cooperation with PASOK, Tsipras said the conditions for cooperation did not exist. If PASOK was aiming for cooperation with the Left, he added, it would have presented different proposals at TIF. He also questioned the logic of proposing cooperation after the elections and not before.

    SYN's leader radically disagreed with Papandreou's proposal for an election law based on the German model, repeating the position of the Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA) alliance calling for direct proportional representation.

    Regarding SYRIZA's positions on the economic issues raised at TIF, Tsipras listed the following main guidelines:

    1. A more 'rational' incomes policy for a period of crisis, with legislation adding 200 euros a month to the minimum wage in 2009 and and additional 100 euros a month in 2010.

    2. A target of creating 100,000 jobs a year for five years by increasing public investment.

    3. Abolition of all anti-working-class laws passed by PASOK governments.

    4. Reduction of defence armaments spending by half.

    5. A state-owned section of the banking system through acquisition of the National Bank of Greece, the Postal Savings Bank and ATEBank.

    6. The nationalisation of strategically important utility companies that have been privatised.

    8. A fairer taxation system than the present one or that proposed by PASOK.

    9. Education in the hands of the state.

    10. SYRIZA asks PASOK whether it will abolish forest-killing laws, ratify forest maps and abolish building outside the limits of the town plan.

    [10] Disciplinary action against Siemens case magistrate

    The head of the courts inspection service and first vice-president of Greece's Supreme Court Ioannis Papanikolaou on Monday initiated disciplinary proceedings against 4th examining magistrate Nikos Zagorianos, who had been in charge of the Siemens bribery and kickbacks investigation.

    Among others, Papanikolaou has charged Zagorianos with breach of duty and abuse of authority.

    Papanikolaou also forwarded a copy of the charges against Zagorianos to an appelate court public prosecutor, to look into whether there is a case for beginning criminal proceedings against the magistrate.

    [11] FRONTEX chopper harassed by Turkey during Aegean patrol

    A Latvian helicopter patrolling the Aegean on behalf of FRONTEX, the European agency coordinating measures to secure the EU's external borders, was harassed by Turkish radar operators on Monday morning, while flying between the Greek islands of Samos and Kos.

    During radio contact with the helicopter at 7:59 and 8.03 on Monday morning, the helicopter pilots were informed that they had entered Turkish air space and ordered to depart.

    The two pilots continued their mission and the helicopter landed at 8:33 on the island of Kos.

    Financial News

    [12] Greece has to present fiscal cutting measures by October 24, Almunia says

    BRUSSELS (ANA-MPA/Mary Aroni)

    EU Monetary Affairs Commissioner Joaquin Almunia on Monday reiterated that Greece is committed to presenting a package of measures aimed at restructuring its public finances by the end of October.

    Speaking to reporters, during a news conference in Brussels on the occasion of presenting the European Commission's quarterly economic forecasts for the seven larger economies of the EU -accounting for 80 pct of the total European economy- Almunia said that "all political leaders and parties in Greece are fully aware of the condition of the Greek economy".

    He added that a new Greek government must inform the Commission by October 24 about the measures adopted by Greece based on recommendations made by the Commission and ECOFIN Council.

    "At the end of October we must have knowledge of the measures adopted by Greece and to assess if actions taken for correcting fiscal imbalances and mainly cutting a fiscal deficit to 3.7 pct of GDP by the end of 2009, are effective," Almunia said, noting that the Commission will assess Greek measures in November taking in view its updated forecasts for the Greek and European economies.

    "We must decide before the end of the year, both for Greece and other member states with excessive fiscal deficits, if effective actions were taken. Then we will decide on how to continue this process, based on rules of a Stability Pact, combined with our assessment over the adopted measures," the Commissioner said.

    [13] KKE on Almunia, economic policy

    In an announcement released on Monday, the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) commented on the statements regarding the Greek economy made earlier by European Commissioner Joaquin Almunia, saying that they merely confirmed what KKE had been saying all along.

    "In his own words, Almunia said what KKE has been clearly telling the people, that there will be an anti-working-class storm regardless whether the government is New Democracy or PASOK," the announcement said, urging working-class voters to give their reply in the ballot box by voting for KKE.

    [14] Greek FinMin criticizes PASOK's economic program

    Greek Economy and Finance Minister Yiannis Papathanasiou on Monday strongly criticized main opposition PASOK party's economic program -presented by its leader George Papandreou in Thessaloniki on Saturday- saying that Mr. Papandreou does not have an exit plan from the crisis.

    Speaking to reporters, Papathanasiou said PASOK's leader continued "offering vague pledges, pledges that no government could realize, at least for the next four years."

    "This is the truth and these are the big lies by PASOK," he said.

    The Greek minister said the cost of PASOK's economic program totaled 10.7 billion euros, or 4.3 pct of the country's Gross Domestic Product. "How is it possible to exit the biggest economic crisis of the last 80 years without taking any unpleasant measure? It is clear that he is consciously lying to citizens," Papathanasiou said.

    [15] On Telecoms announces acquisition of Vivodi Telecom

    On Telecoms on Monday announced the signing of a contract to purchase local rival Vivodi Telecom, in a move designed to create a strong player in the domestic telecommunications market.

    Under the deal, On Telecoms has announced a share capital increase plan, worth 50 million euros in cash, which will be fully covered by the Efremoglou family - the owners of Vivodi Telecom - participating with a 20-pct equity stake in the merged company.

    Vivodi will operate as subsidiary of On Telecoms and will become the group's investment arm for developing activities beyond the greater Athens area, beginning immediately from Thessaloniki.

    Vivodi will add around 35,000 LLU customers to On Telecoms' subscribers' base, mostly larger enterprises and organisations.

    [16] Hellenic Sugar Industry reports 38.3 mln euros loss

    Hellenic Sugar Industry on Monday reported a 38.3 million euros loss for the 12-month period from July 1, 2008 to June 30, 2009, after profits of 464,493 euros in the previous 12-month period. The company attributed its disappointing results to an extra contribution of 17.9 million euros to a Sugar Restructuring Fund and a 7.5 million euros from inertia costs by two factories in Larissa and Xanthi.

    Consolidated after tax and minorities losses totaled 42.9 million euros, while sales rose 9.7 pct to 199.8 million euros. Parent turnover rose to 147.6 million euros, pre-tax losses totaled 47.5 million euros and after tax losses 49.5 million euro.s

    Dimitris Darnakas, Hellenic Sugar's chief executive, speaking to ANA-MPA, said the company will begin its turnaround probably from next year.

    [17] Building production index up 6.1% in Q2

    Greece's production index in the construction sector grew 6.1 pct in the second quarter of 2009, compared with the corresponding period last year, after an increase of 2.8 pct recorded in the 2008-2007 period, the National Statistical Service announced on Monday.

    The statistics agency, in a report, attributed the 6.1-pct increase of the index to a 6.9-pct rise in the civil engineers' works index and an 11.2-pct decline in the building production index.

    [18] DOREKTHESI opens in Anthousa on Sept. 17

    The 53rd DOREKTHESI trade show for gifts, toys, decoration, seasonal items and Christmas gifts will take place at the EXPO Athens exhibition centre in Anthousa on Sept. 17-21, 2009.

    Roughly 250 exhibitors, including the sector's largest importing and manufacturing companies, will present their products in the largest gift show held in Greece. The exhibition is open only to commercial visitors.

    [19] Stocks end 2.34% down

    Greek stocks ended sharply lower in the Athens Stock Exchange on Monday, with the composite index of the market losing 2.34 pct to end at 2,468 points. Turnover shrank to 172.8 million euros, of which 12.2 million euros were block trades.

    Most sectors moved down, with the Utilities (3.94 pct), Banks (3.89 pct), Media (2.78 pct), Chemicals (2.39 pct) and Industrial Products (2.20 pct) suffering the heaviest percentage losses of the day, while Health (1.18 pct) and Travel (0.53 pct) scored gains.

    The FTSE 20 index dropped 2.73 pct, the FTSE 40 index fell 0.84 pct and the FTSE 80 index ended 1.57 pct down. Broadly, decliners led advancers by 161 to 65 with another 36 issues unchanged.

    Sector indices ended as follows:

    Insurance: -0.65%

    Industrials: -2.20%

    Commercial: -1.17%

    Construction: -0.43%

    Media: -2.78%

    Oil & Gas: -0.21%

    Personal & Household: -1.58%

    Raw Materials: -1.28%

    Travel & Leisure: +0.53%

    Technology: -1.18%

    Telecoms: -0.54%

    Banks: -3.89%

    Food & Beverages: -2.08%

    Health: +1.18%

    Utilities: -3.94%

    Chemicals: -2.39%

    Financial Services: -0.27%

    The stocks with the highest turnover were National Bank, OPAP, Alapis and Eurobank.

    Selected shares from the FTSE/ASE-20 index closed in euros as follows:

    Alpha Bank: 11.30

    ATEbank: 1.53

    Public Power Corp (PPC): 15.16

    HBC Coca Cola: 16.20

    Hellenic Petroleum: 7.32

    National Bank of Greece: 21.90

    EFG Eurobank Ergasias: 9.13

    Intralot: 4.58

    OPAP: 18.24

    OTE: 11.14

    Bank of Piraeus: 11.07

    Titan: 21.60

    [20] ADEX closing report

    The September contract on the FTSE 20 index was trading at a discount of 0.27 pct in the Athens Derivatives Exchange on Monday, with turnover jumping to 100.068 million euros. Volume on the Big Cap index totaled 10,379 contracts worth 67.099 million euros, with 26,007 open positions in the market.

    Volume in futures contracts on equities totaled 34,681 contracts worth 32.969 million euros, with investment interest focusing on National Bank's contracts (5,471), followed by Eurobank (818), MIG (2,593), OTE (4,066), OPAP (2,210), Piraeus Bank (2,997), Alpha Bank (1,383), Intracom (1,788), Intralot (1,788), Cyprus Bank (2,472) and Hellenic Postbank (1,356).

    [21] Greek bond market closing report

    Turnover in the Greek electronic secondary bond market totaled 1.630 billion euros, of which 920 million euros were buy orders and the remaining 710 million euros were sell orders.

    The 10-year benchmark bond (July 19, 2019) was the most heavily traded security with a turnover of 1.404 billion euros. The yield spread between the 10-year Greek and German benchmark bonds shrank to 128 basis points, with the Greek bond yielding 4.53 pct and the German Bund 3.25 pct.

    In interbank markets, interest rates were largely unchanged. The 12-month Euribor rate was 1.25 pct, the six-month rate 1.05 pct, the three-month rate 0.77 pct and the one-month rate 0.45 pct.

    [22] Foreign Exchange rates - Tuesday

    Reference buying rates per euro released by the European Central Bank:

    U.S. dollar 1.467

    Pound sterling 0.886

    Danish kroner 7.502

    Swedish kroner 10.344

    Japanese yen 133.36

    Swiss franc 1.525

    Norwegian kroner 8.737

    Canadian dollar 1.600

    Australian dollar 1.709

    General News

    [23] First doses of novel influenza virus due in 15 days

    The first 500,000 doses of the vaccine against novel A(H1N1) influenza or 'swine flu' are due to be imported into Greece within the next 15 days, according to an announcement on Monday by the head of the National Centre for Health Operations Panos Efstathiou.

    Planning for administering the vaccines throughout the country's 53 prefectures is expected to be complete by the end of the current week, he added, while clarifying that the vaccine cannot begin to be administered right away because it must first receive the all-clear from the European Medicines Agency (EMEA), which is expected to be issued in October.

    Efstathiou announced the above to reporters after meeting with Western Macedonia health services officials in the northern Greek city of Thessaloniki.

    [24] Man charged with arson in Grammatiko wildfire

    A 59-year-old man, a resident of Grammatiko, northeastern Attica prefecture, was charged on Monday by prosecutor Dimitris Gyzis for arson in the devastating fire that burned thousands of acres of forestland in NE Attica in August.

    The man is charged with intentional arson, while the charges also are against other unknown perpetrators. A few days earlier, in the process of investigation into the causes of the blaze, the prosecutor had called the man -- who owns a land plot in the Sesi region of Grammatiko,where the fire is believed to have started -- in for questioning, as evidence implicated him as suspicious of arson. The defendant has denied the charges. The case file will be assigned to an examining magistrate.

    [25] Two killed in labor accident

    Two workers, from India and Nepal, were killed on Monday morning in a labor accident in the Athens northern suburb of Kato Kifissia.

    The two workers were members of a crew of a technical firm carrying out works on behalf of the Water Board (EYDAP). The crew was hooking up a local childcare center's cesspit with the EYDAP central sewage pipe.

    The two workers fainted from the methane fumes in the manhole, from which they were removed a few minutes later by a Fire Brigade team and were rushed to a nearby hospital, where they were pronounced dead on arrival (DOA).

    The contractor was arrested.

    Commenting on the incident, the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) described it as "yet another crime against the working class" in an announcement on Monday and called on "Greek and foreign workers to rise up in every workplace and deal with the constant deterioration of work conditions, intensification and blackmail."

    [26] Greek schools to celebrate UN Int'l Day of Democracy on Sept. 15

    The UN International Day of Democracy will be celebrated in schools on Sept. 15 at the initiative of Parliament President Dimitris Sioufas and Education Minister Aris Sipiotopoulos, the ministry of education announced on Monday.

    September 15 was declared International Day of Democracy following a relevant UN General Assembly decision based on the adoption by the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) of a Universal Declaration on Democracy in September 1997 that affirmed the principles of democracy, the elements and exercise of democratic government, and the global scope of democracy.

    [27] Two arrested in drug trafficking ring

    The Attica Security police drug squad, in cooperation with the Special Investigations division (YPEE) for narcotics and arms on Monday uncovered a ring trafficking in large quantities of drugs in the area surrounding central Omonia square in Athens.

    The authorities were put on the trail of the ring by a postal package originating from Argentina, which contained 440 grams of cocaine concealed in special pockets. The package was initially traced at Frankfurt airport by the German Customs Officials. The recipient of the package was a 24-year-old Greek national. The package was "delivered" to the recipient, who was arrested when he took possession of the package in Keratsini, near Piraeus.

    Under questioning, the detainee named the end recipient, a Nigerian drug dealer, who had organised the transfer.

    Police found another 20.3 grams of heroin in the possession of the Nigerian, who sold heroin and cocian daily to addicts in the Omonia vicinity.

    The Nigerian was found to have a police record, with a previous arrest for drug dealing, and was also found to be using forged travel documents presenting him as a minor.

    Weather Forecast

    [28] Rainy on Tuesday

    Rainy weather and northerly winds are forecast in most parts of the country on Tuesday, with wind velocity reaching 3-6 beaufort. Temperatures will range between 16C and 29C. Cloudy with possible showers in Athens, with light winds and temperatures ranging from 18C to 28C. Cloudy in Thessaloniki, with temperatures ranging from 17C to 26C.

    [29] The Monday edition of Athens ' dailies at a glance

    Main opposition PASOK party leader George Papandreou's address at Thessaloniki International Fair (TIF) and main policies if he wins the elections along with Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis' reaction dominated the headlines on Monday in Athens ' dailies.

    ADESMEFTOS TYPOS: "Words, words, words! Papandreou's speech in Thessaloniki an essay".

    APOGEVMATINI: "Karamanlis criticises George Papandreou for outrageous promises, if implemented they'll exasperate problems in the economy".

    ELEFTHERI ORA: "George's fishing net full of holes".

    ELEFTHEROS: "George gave us promises without any explanations - All crucial questions left unanswered".

    ELEFTHEROTYPIA: "Papandreou previews Barack Obama recipe and three years of austerity".

    ESTIA: "Ruling New Democracy (ND) makes unbelievable mistakes and makes PASOK's mission easier".

    ETHNOS: "Clear cut words from George".

    TA NEA: "Dominant in Thessaloniki - George's triumph at TIF".

    VRADYNI: "Karamanlis' answer to Papandreou's generalities: Papandreou lies to people".

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