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Athens News Agency: News in English, 00-11-28
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From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>
 EU Commission-Greece-Doping-200428/11/2000 21:17:25
Education and Culture European Commissioner Viniane Reding met on Tuesday with Greek Culture Minister Evangelos Venizelos and discussed issues regarding preparations for the Athens 2004 Olympic Games.
She stressed that European Union member-states should coordinate their efforts to effectively combat doping in sports especially in light of the Athens 2004 Games.
"I have declared along with the sports ministers (of the Union) that in the Athens Games we will not tolerate any doping. We have begun our work at the international anti-doping agency, following pressure applied by Europeans," Reding said.
"At the same time we are active in developing our own anti-doping programme in Europe, with the participation of all countries and relevant athletic organisations," she added.
On his part, Venizelos lauded Reding's work, making special mention of her succeful efforts to name 2004 as European Culture Year.
 EU Commision-Soccer-FIFA28/11/2000 21:15:11
EU Commissioner for Education, Culture and Sports, Viviane Reding, said in Athens on Tuesday that ?national laws of EU member-states override regulations of private organisations. This applies for FIFA, as well.?
She also termed international footballs governing body as acting as a ?cartel?.
Reding added during a press conference that European soccer federations had until Oct. 30, 2000 to change international rules governing trades of players.
?We requested for the submittal of new proposals on rules governing trades of players in professional sports. Meanwhile, we asked FIFA to amend the rules of trades, following complaints that were lodged to us. The international Federation did not do a thing, however. Enough is enough,? Reding said.
 Internet - Raid - Bogus documents28/11/2000 18:15:17
Greek authorities concluded an unprecedented cyberspace-related investigation this week with a raid on an Athens-area firm allegedly supplying bogus documents of all kinds -- from passports, pilot licenses to clerics IDs over the Internet.
Police identified the firm as ?Global Money Consultants?, listing one Konstantinos Chrysoulis as its president and managing director.
An Athens prosecutor has filed felony indictments in relation to the enterprise and against any responsible individual, as arrest warrants have also been issued.
Among others, authorities discovered around 1,500 blank university degrees, foreign press IDs, certificates for mock marriages issued in Mexico and unilateral divorce papers issued in the Dominican Republic, as well as bogus drivers licenses and even handgun permits.
 Gekat SA-results28/11/2000 16:50:24
Gekat SA on Tuesday reported a 54.4 percent rise in its nine-month turnover to 5.3 billion drachmas, from 3.4 billion the same period in 1999.
Pre-tax profits totalled 315 million drachmas, only a fraction higher from 314 million drachmas the same period last year.
Consolidated turnover totalled 10.3 billion drachmas and pre-tax profits at 841 million drachmas. Group assets totalled 11.5 billion drachmas.
 Sarandopoulos SA-results28/11/2000 16:46:41
Sarandopoulos, a Greek listed construction company, on Tuesday reported a 70.5 percent rise in its nine-month turnover to 26 billion drachmas, and a 12.5 percent rise in profits to 2.0 billion drachmas, from 1.79 billion the same period last year.
The company expects this year's turnover to exceed 33 billion drachmas from 22.3 billion in 1999 and pre-tax profits at 3.2 billion drachmas from 2.4 billion last year.
 Rilken Group-results28/11/2000 16:42:34
Rilken Group on Tuesday reported a 66 percent increase in its nine-month sales to 10.2 billion drachmas from 6.1 billion the same period last year, and a spectacular 209 percent jump in consolidated profits to 992 million drachmas from 321 million drachmas in the January-September period in 1999.
Rilken's sales, however, fell by 4.4 percent to 5.8 billion drachmas and pre-tax profits jumped 257 percent to 1.2 billion drachmas.
A company statement said that a sharp rise in consolidated sales reflected a successful distribution of Henkel Hellas' products, while a fall in Rilken sales reflected lower exports.
 Titan Cement-results28/11/2000 16:32:37
Titan Cement Group on Tuesday announced a 9.5 percent increase in its nine-month sales to 156 billion drachmas, and EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes and amortisation) at 48.3 billion drachmas, up 19.4 percent from the same period last year.
Net pre-tax and minority rights profits rose 11.8 percent to 35.8 billion drachmas in the January-September period this year.
Parent company's sales increased by 5.7 percent to 85.7 billion and net nine-month profits rose 2.9 percent to 17.6 billion drachmas.
A company statement said domestic demand was slower because a higher costs in energy and charters hit profit margings.
Titan Cement completed the takeover of Tarmac America, worth 656 million US dollars, and the sale of 11 mines to Vulcan Materials for 282 million dollars, in early October.
 Greece - Yugoslavia - Police - Cooperation28/11/2000 16:28:30
BELGRADE (ANA) Greeces public order minister arrived here on Tuesday for talks with Yugoslavias leadership regarding joint efforts to combat organised crime and illegal immigration.
Greek Minister Mihalis Chrysohoidis also proposed the signing of an agreement for bilateral law enforcement cooperation, akin to pacts Greece has with another 35 countries. According to reports, the proposal was well received by the new Kostunitsa government.
Chrysohoidis was received by, among others, Yugoslav Interior Minister Zoran Zivkovic and transitional Serbian government deputy president Stefan Nikcevic.
The latest trip by a key Greek minister to Belgrade in the wake of Slobodan Milosevics election defeat and a new federal government led by Vojislav Kostunica falls in line with Athens clearly enunciated policy of bolstering Yugoslavias post-Milosevic reconstruction.
 Bank of Greece-interest rates-cut28/11/2000 16:24:11
The Bank of Greece on Tuesday announced a cut in its base interest rates by 50 basis points, its seventh this year, in an effort to achieve short-term interest rates convergence with the eurozone.
The central bank's monetary policy council, in its regular meeting, decided to cut its 14-day intervention rates from 7.0 to 6.5 percent and the overnight rate from 6.0 to 5.5 percent.
The bank also announced a cut in its Lombard rate from 7.75 to 7.25 percent.
 Greece-bond auction results28/11/2000 16:16:47
Greek long-term yields fell substantially during Tuesday's regular auction of state securities by the Public Debt Management Organisation.
The average weighed yield of a 10year bond, worth 250 billion drachmas and paying an annual coupon of 6.0 percent, fell to 5.77 percent, from 5.98 percent in the previous auction of same bonds on October 3, 2000.
Bids submitted totalled 1.14 trillion drachmas, almost five times more than the asked sum.
 ASE-close28/11/2000 16:12:35
Equity prices ended sharply lower on Tuesday pushing the general index, temporarily, to new year lows on the Athens Stock Exchange.
Traders said sentiment was hit by rumours that National Economy Minister Yiannos Papantoniou had resigned, which burdened the already negative climate on the market.
A new cut in interest rates by the Bank of Greece and comments made by Mr. Papantoniou that current share prices offered investment opportunities, were largely ignored by investors who continued liquidating positions in smaller capitalisation stocks.
The general index ended at 3,213.42 points, losing 2.98 percent, but off the day's lows of 3,205.40 points. The index is now 42 percent lower from the beginning of the year.
Turnover was a low 59.85 billion drachmas. The FTSE/ASE 20 index for blue chip and heavy traded stocks ended 2.81 percent off at 1,839.54 points, and the FTSE/ASE 40 index dropped 4.25 percent to 381.68 points.
The parallel market index for smaller capitalisation stocks ended 6.94 percent lower at 322.62 points.
 Simitis-Papantoniou-stock market28/11/2000 14:51:30
The Athens Stock Exchange is a victim of an international economic crisis and a political uncertainty in the United States, National Economy and Finance Minister Yiannos Papantoniou said on Tuesday.
Speaking to reporters after a meeting with Prime Minister Costas Simitis to discuss economic prospects and developments in the stock market, Papantoniou said he was confident that the Athens bourse would recover from its current low levels.
"The recovery will be based on the perception that share prices are currently at very attractive levels," he said and urged for investors to adopt this view.
"The sooner this view is adopted, the better the stock market will perform," Papantoniou noted.
The inflation rate would remain at relatively high levels as long as oil prices remained high and the US dollar was strong against the euro, national economy minister said.
He reassured, however, that a high inflation rate could not negatively affect the country's economy. "Greece is among EU states that resisted more effectively to an international oil crisis," Papantoniou stressed.
Referring to an approval of a Third Community Framework by the EU, Papantoniou said it was "an historic day for Greece.
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