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Athens News Agency: News in English, 01-12-27

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>

CONTENTS

  • [01] Govt urges for patience and understanding in euro transition
  • [02] Greek consumers' complaints up sharply in 2001
  • [03] ATHOC is seeking 6,000 professional drivers
  • [04] Athens bus system to collect outgoing drachma coins for UNICEF
  • [05] Foreign Exchange Rates - Friday
  • [06] Sports roundup
  • [07] Weather Forecast: Snow and rain on Friday
  • [08] Weather Forecast: Scattered cloud on Friday
  • [09] Greek stocks end flat in thin trade

  • [01] Govt urges for patience and understanding in euro transition

    27/12/2001 21:19:43

    The introduction of the euro currency needs the effort and participation of every consumer, every Greek citizen. "Each one of us has to use the new currency and to show patience and understanding to any problems," Economy and Finance Minister Nikos Christodoulakis said on Thursday.

    Addressing the final meeting of a National Coordinating Committee for the Euro in 2001, Christodoulakis noted the significance of Greece's participation in the eurozone and stressed the need for patience and understanding to deal with any problems arising during the first days of the euro circulation. He urged for both citizens and agencies to cooperate to achieve a smooth transition towards the new currency.

    Bank of Greece's governor, Lucas Papademos, reminded that the first meeting of the committee was held two-and-a-half years ago and stressed that a lot has been achieved to facilitate the euro transition over that period.

    The central banker and Greek Banks' Union secretary-general Christos Gortsos said that around 80 percent of Greek banks would be ready to supply euro bills, mainly 10, 20 and 50 banknotes, through their ATMs from January 1, 2002.

    Large banks will be fully prepared to meet euro banknote demand by January 1. The two bankers said although large businesses' euro bill supply rate was satisfactory, small- and medium-sized enterprises were lagging far behind and that supply has not met 50 percent of the target.

    Greek banks have sold around 85 percent of their euro familirisation packages, totalling three million, since December 17. Papademos said he expected the remaining 15 percent to be sold by the end of the year.

    [02] Greek consumers' complaints up sharply in 2001

    27/12/2001 21:18:38

    Greek consumers filed 121,510 complaints in 2001, INKA an independent consumers' protection agency said on Thursday, reflecting a sharp increase in consumer complaints against Hellenic Telecommunications Organisation (OTE), while the food sector accounted for 12.63 percent of total complaints retaining the leading position for the fourth consecutive year.

    INKA said that Greek consumers filed 15,343 complaints against the food sector this year. OTE, Slimming Centres, prices and tourism were also high in the complaints' list.

    Consumer complaints totalled 104,323 last year. Complaints against OTE totalled 9,914 in 2001, from 1,896 last year, accounting for 8.16 percent total complaints.

    INKA said that the steady rise in complaints reflected a serious core crisis in the domestic consumer market

    The Hydra island inhabitants were champions in filing consumer complaints in 2001.

    [03] ATHOC is seeking 6,000 professional drivers

    27/12/2001 21:18:31

    Taxi cab drivers and other such professionals will be called upon to become paid volunteers for the Athens 2004 Olympic Games, a press release issued on Thursday by the Athens 2004 Olympic Games Organizing Committee (ATHOC) said.

    ATHOC began contacts with professional drivers' trade unions to secure about 6,000 drivers needed for the Games, as 1,260 VIPs will each need access to a car 24-hours-a-day, while another 4,200 VIPs will each need to have access to a car on a 17-hour per day basis.

    The drivers will be provided with uniforms, compensation and their food will be paid for by ATHOC, while the organizing committee will put them through a fast course of language learning, history and culture regarding the Games.

    [04] Athens bus system to collect outgoing drachma coins for UNICEF

    27/12/2001 21:17:10

    Athens city bus system organization announced on Friday that it will place boxes in all its buses asking its customers to deposit their drachma coins in support of UNICEF's war children.

    The boxes will be placed in 300 buses, 100 electrically powered trolleys and the 23 stops of the Athens-Piraeus metro.

    [05] Foreign Exchange Rates - Friday

    27/12/2001 21:17:00

    Indicative tourist buying rates

    U.S. dollar 383.123

    German mark 172.829

    French franc 051.531

    Pound sterling 555.048

    Irish punt 429.202

    Belgian franc 008.379

    Luxembourg franc 008.379

    Dutch guilder 153.389

    Italian lira (100) 017.457

    Austrian schilling 024.565

    Danish kroner 045.441

    Swedish kroner 035.802

    Finnish mark 056.852

    Spanish peseta 002.032

    Portuguese escudo 001.686

    Japanese yen (100) 291.663

    Swiss franc 227.850

    Norwegian kroner 042.46

    Cyprus pound 587.560

    Canadian dollar 239.156

    Australian dollar 194.447

    [06] Sports roundup

    27/12/2001 18:44:17

    Under-used Porto midfielder Antonio Folja is the latest acquisition for league-leading AEK Athens, as the Portuguese international arrived in the Greek capital this week to sign a six-month contract.

    Foljas signing comes on the heels of this weeks feature by the German football magazine ?Kicker? ranking AEK as the best European team, statistically speaking, for December.

    Folja passed a physical on Thursday shortly before signing a contract worth 130 million drachmas (340.75 drachmas equal one euro).

    [07] Weather Forecast: Snow and rain on Friday

    27/12/2001 18:05:34

    Rain and snow is forecast throughout the country on Friday. Winds northerly, northwesterly, moderate to strong and in some areas they will reach gale force. In the north, temperatures will range from -5C to 4C; on the rest of the mainland from 2C to 11C; and in the islands from 10C to 15C. Rain in Athens with snow in local high elevations and temperatures between 8C and 11C. Sleet and snow in Thessaloniki, with temperatures from -1C to 4C.

    [08] Weather Forecast: Scattered cloud on Friday

    27/12/2001 18:04:17

    Rain and snow is forecast throughout the country on Friday. Winds northerly, northwesterly, moderate to strong and in some areas they will reach gale force. In the north, temperatures will range from -5C to 4C; on the rest of the mainland from 2C to 11C; and in the islands from 10C to 15C. Rain in Athens with snow in local high elevations and temperatures between 8C and 11C. Sleet and snow in Thessaloniki, with temperatures from -1C to 4C.

    [09] Greek stocks end flat in thin trade

    27/12/2001 16:34:21

    Equity prices ended Thursday's session flat reflecting lack of fresh incentives and directions in the market after its two-day Christmas holiday.

    The general index ended 0.04 percent lower at 2,581.90 points, with turnover a moderate Dr 64.8 billion, or 190.28 million euros, boosted by large block trades.

    The Holding, Metals and IT Solutions sectors suffered the heaviest percentage losses (1.16 percent, 1.05 percent and 0.89 percent, respectively), while the Foods, Insurance and Construction sectors recorded the biggest percentage gains (1.52 percent, 0.35 percent and 0.31 percent, respectively).

    The FTSE/ASE 20 index for blue chip and heavy traded stocks ended 0.12 percent lower, the FTSE/ASE MID 40 index fell 0.24 percent and the FTSE/ASE SmallCap 80 index rose 0.16 percent.

    Broadly, decliners led advancers by 186 to 126 with another 41 issues unchanged.


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