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Athens News Agency: News in English, 05-11-29

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Government approves draft law reforming public-sector enterprises

  • [01] Government approves draft law reforming public-sector enterprises

    An inner cabinet meeting on Tuesday unanimously approved a draft bill aiming to promote changes in public sector enterprises.

    Speaking to reporters after the meeting, Transport and Communications Minister Mihalis Liapis said the new legislation was promoting new standards for economic management and supervision of public sector enterprises with the aim to offer better services to citizens and combat overspending. Public sector enterprises would operate on market criteria and would be supervised by an Inter-ministerial Commission, Liapis said.

    Economy and Finance Minister George Alogoskoufis said the draft bill would bring radical changes and stressed it would lead to a restructuring of public enterprises and organisations. New hirings to enterprises in which the state owns an equity stake of more than 51 pct would continue to be made through ASEP - the civil service's hiring agency.

    Interior Minister Prokopis Pavlopoulos said public sector enterprises in which the state was not a majority shareholder could request ASEP's assistance in new hirings.

    Labour Minister Panos Panagiotopoulos said public sector enterprises would become more competitive and stressed that a view of permanent work positions in the public sector was outdated and offended those working in the private sector.

    Commenting on the draft bill during Tuesday's regular press briefing, government spokesman Theodoros Roussopoulos described it as a "significant breakthrough for the refoundation of the State, which was a pre-election promise made by New Democracy".

    He stressed aspects of the new law, such as the introduction of private-sector management principles and international accounting standards for public enterprises and organisations, or the shift of bourse-listed state utilities into the private sector.

    The spokesman also focused on the changes to labour relations with public-sector enterprises and utilities, so that newly-hired staff were recruited with the same terms as equivalent private-sector companies, with new labour contracts drawn up in line with labour law and the rationalisation of wages of the presidents, governors and board-members of public-sector companies.

    He clarified that ASEP would still be responsible for the hiring of new staff at public-sector enterprises not listed on the Athens bourse and for bourse-listed companies in which the state held a majority share - even though they would no longer be considered part of the state sector.

    Also preserved is the status quo for the past 10 years, where recruitment outside ASEP is allowed only for state-run public utilities that are listed on the stock exchange, in which the state holds a minority share.

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