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Athens News Agency: News in English, 06-11-20

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] PM Costas Karamanlis outlines Greece's economic policy at London School of Economics

  • [01] PM Costas Karamanlis outlines Greece's economic policy at London School of Economics

    Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis, making a speech at the London School of Economics on Monday evening, outlined his economic policy, insisting on reforms with social consent and describing the hospitable investments environment being created, while highlighting the country's geopolitical role.

    "Greece has created a new business environment, friendly for businesses and private initiative. It has created new opportunities for local and foreign investors, it has created a new employment environment for young educated people. It is a friendly, modern and safe country. A country that knows how to listen to and to interpret the signs of the times and how to adjust to them with changes and reforms, following clear vision and a targeted plan," he said.

    Referring to reforms, Karamanlis said "to this end, the Lisbon strategy is the road map leading our course. With the greatest social consent possible, with effectiveness and social sensitivity we must bring about necessary reforms and changes in our institutions, the economy and society. Greece has entered a period of intense structural reforms to enable it to adjust to international changes and to be sufficiently prepared for the future."

    The prime minister spoke of the challenges and the Lisbon strategy and noted that "all these challenges are crucial today. But the transition from intention to implementation is not always clear. Particularly, if we take into consideration the reaction to reforms and the pressure being exerted by specific groups of interests. Consequently, including society in every step of this path is very important. We must explain clearly the real, longterm benefits of changes, particularly when the benefits will take place in the future, while the cost will be immediate."

    Karamanlis further termed the decrease in the deficit by five percentage points in a short period of time a national success, saying that "in 2006 the fiscal deficit is decreasing below three percent of GDP, as was also confirmed by the European Commission in its recent official predictions. The decrease in the deficit by over five percentage points in such a short period of time is a national success. And, as it is confirmed by the Commission's latest predictions, it will continue in the years to come."

    The prime minister also referred to Greece's geopolitical role and made an indirect appeal for investments and focused on energy policy in particular.

    "Today, Greece is playing a leading role in southeastern Europe, a region that is developing with great and still unexploited business possibilities, that is attracting strong international interest. Greece has achieved a great deal and it is still halfway. A series of development measures that support the activity of the private sector have been taken successfully to strengthen productivity," he said.

    Karamanlis went on to say that "we are gradually opening important markets such as those of electric power and natural gas, we are promoting a large-scale programme of privatisation and we are strengthening the capital market's arrangements. The decrease in the tax rate for businesses from 35 percent to 25 percent until 2007, as well as the new investment law have created new investment opportunities. The dynamic development of the new energy policy is one of our basic priorities."

    Speaking earlier at the Travellers club, where he analysed all aspects of economic and national strategy, Karamanlis underlined the investment opportunities existing and replied to questions put to him. He ascertained the strong investment interest and the positive climate being shaped for developments in the national economy, also based on positive developments regarding economic indicators.

    Finance and Economy Minister George Alogoskoufis also replied to questions.

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