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Athens News Agency: News in English, 08-11-23

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

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] Karamanlis: Gov't plan aimed at real economy, citizens
  • [02] PASOK ahead in 2 recent polls
  • [03] Athens Newspaper Headlines

  • [01] Karamanlis: Gov't plan aimed at real economy, citizens

    Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis on Saturday toured the central Greek prefecture of Magnesia and the port city of Volos, where he visited the city's chamber of commerce and met with its board as well as representatives of producer classes in the prefecture.

    During his address at the Volos chamber of commerce, the prime minister referred specifically to the ongoing global financial crisis.

    "To today's challenges we respond with an organised plan. We have, from the first moment, guaranteed all bank deposits; we took measures to protect borrowers; we have forbidden the foreclosures of people's primary residence. Our plan to fortify liquidity in market will send 28 billion euros to real economy; this is the truth."

    Karamanlis criticised what he called the "well-known and permanent deniers of everything, the ones who are attempting to twist the truth ... These people claim that we're handing out money to the bankers. The truth is crystal clear: We are not offering anything to anyone. We will not spend a single cent from the state budget. The citizens will not be burdened, but on the contrary, the citizens will benefit. This plan is for depositors' benefit; it will benefit small and medium sized businesspeople that need money to engage in commerce".

    Referring to the draft state budget, he said: "There are some who want to misinform, to scare-monger and lie. I repeat once more: there will be no extra taxes. Extra revenue for the budget will come from the measures against tax evasion and projected economy growth".

    Karamanlis also referred to farmers and unemployed, stating that the government will support farmers by offering a 150-million-euros loan without interest to farm unions in order funnel cash advances to farm producers.

    Regarding unemployment, the premier underlined that his first priority is the protection of the labour market and boosting employment.

    "We have announced the hiring of 200,000 people in public sector in 2009 and we are speeding up and with even stronger determination reforms and changes, which is the only way leading to the economy's development, to new investments and the creation of new jobs.

    "I am fully aware that households are being pressured, and are going through harder times. We have taken and will take any possible measure in the future. But I must state that I will not put jeopardise the achievements we've made in the past years, ones that have allowed our economy to better resist (the economic downturn) than those of our EU associates".

    Concluding, the prime minister said problems are not solved with hopes and prayers but with serious and responsible policies.

    "From being pleasant for a while I choose to be useful for the country. The challenge for all of us is clear. Each and every one of us must make his choices, choosing between mere impressions and substantive result; between prayers and real solutions; between superficiality and seriousness, in the final analysis, between irresponsibility and responsibility."

    Afterwards, Karamanlis was toured a new tunnel project on the Volos ring road, speaking with construction workers and engineers.

    He concluded his tour of the prefecture by visiting a local dairy cooperative.

    PASOK reax

    In a later reaction, a main opposition PASOK spokesman responded by saying that "Mr. Karamanlis visited Volos today as New Democracy's leader not as the prime minister."

    According to spokesman George Papaconstantinou, prime minister's priority was not to find solutions for people's problems but to support his collapsing image and criticise PASOK," adding that such old-fashioned recipes are not trusted any more.

    KKE

    On its part, the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) called on the people to "rise to their stature and stop tolerating the trickery and blackmailing by the government and the Maastricht parties."

    "It is the responsibility of wage-earners, the unemployed, the self-employed and the small-to-medium sized farmers not to be fooled or frightened, and to not pay for the repercussions of the crisis for which they are not responsible," a KKE announcement read.

    Finally, the Coalition of the Left (Synaspismos) said the draft 2009 budget "will lead the economy into recession and a majority of society into more difficult times."

    [02] PASOK ahead in 2 recent polls

    The latest batch of opinion polls were published in a couple of Athens dailies over the weekend, with one showing main opposition PASOK ahead of ruling ND by 4.5 percentage points, 37 percent to 32.5 percent.

    The Coalition of the Left (Synaspismos) follows with 13 percent; KKE with 8 percent, the hitherto anonymous and out-of-Parliament Ecologists with 4.5 percent and the Popular Orthodox Rally (LA.OS) with 4 percent.

    Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis is ahead of PASOK leader George Papandreou on the question of who is more capable to be prime minister, taking 32 percent of respondents' preferences to 30 percent for Papandreou.

    The first poll was compiled by the Athens firm VPRC and published in the Sunday edition of "Eleftherotypia".

    In the second survey, published in the latest press addition to the Athens newspaper scene, Realnews, PASOK garners 28.7 percent of respondents' preferences to 25 for ND; Synaspismos is favored by 9.1 percent; KKE 6 percent; "another party" 4.6 percent and LA.OS 3.5 percent.

    [03] Athens Newspaper Headlines

    The Sunday edition of Athens' newspapers at a glance

    Continuous local press focus on the Vatopedi monastery furor and the latest political developments in the country dominated the headlines in Athens' newspapers on Sunday.

    ADESMEFTOS TYPOS: "They're taking everything back from (Vatopedi Monastery Abbot) Ephaim".

    APOGEVMATINI: "A government reshuffle will be necessary: Interview by DM Vangelis Meimarakis".

    AVGHI: "Health sector: SOS. Civil servants to be left without doctors (in pension fund)."

    AVRIANI: "High-profile names involved in (local) Siemens payouts and kickbacks".

    CHORA: "The well-known pilgrims of Vatopedi Monastery".

    ELEFTHEROS TYPOS: "Tax cuts in 2009 with eight-billion-euro bonus from Brussels".

    ELEFTHEROTYPIA: "PASOK 37 percent to ND's 32.5 percent. New opinion poll by VPRC".

    ETHNOS: The paper again banners a headline on Abbot Ephaim's dealings in land exchange case.

    EPOCHI: "They're trapped in their policies. Government, PAOSK unable to deal with crisis."

    KATHIMERINI: "We're heading towards the crisis loaded with debt. Greece entering a tough 2009 with reduced national credibility and virtual budget".

    LOGOS: "Concerns over the Greek economy".

    NIKI: "Karamanlis a 'hostage' to his 151 MP majority, trying to bide for time".

    PARON: "Reshuffle, overturn: Eight ministers leaving."

    PROTO THEMA: The paper also banners a story on the Vatopedi case, claiming that Abbot attempted to sell-off part of an archaeological site (Ramnounda)".

    Realnews: "Ephaim's bank transfers..."

    RIZOSPASTIS: "Class warfare against plutocrasy and Euro 'one-way street' ".

    TO VIMA: "Greece worried! Crisis gripping society"

    VRADYNI: "New government plan to fight unemployment".


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