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Athens News Agency: News in English, 09-02-26

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] PASOK leader to present "Green Development"
  • [02] Deputy FM meets Chinese counterpart
  • [03] Hubner briefed by Greek leadership; addresses R&D seminar in Athens
  • [04] FinMin on liquidity
  • [05] Greek stocks end 1.31% higher

  • [01] PASOK leader to present "Green Development"

    Main opposition opposition PASOK leader George Papandreou will present the party's programme on "Green Development", during an event in Athens next Thursday.

    Invited speakers at the event include EU Greek Environment Commissioner Stavros Dimas and Christos Zerefos, President of the European Committee for the Renewable Energy Sources.

    PASOK spokesman George Papaconstantinou, meanwhile, did not confirm a visit by Papandreou to Germany, adding however that the main opposition party leader continued his contacts and meetings for the promotion of his proposals for the handling of the present economic crisis.

    On Olympic Airways

    Main opposition PASOK's proposal for the establishment of a mixed scheme for the ailing national carrier Olympic Airways (OA) was reiterated on Wednesday by party spokesman for transport and communications issues Nikos Sifounakis, during a press conference.

    Sifounakis noted that PASOK proposed the establishment of a mixed scheme with private and state capital in a strategic alliance, to create a reliable international air carrier.

    He said that any solution that does not guarantee state participation was a 'red line' for PASOK, adding that state participating would ensure the labor regulations and would avert the establishment of oligopolies.

    Sifounakis further said that the government must take a clear-cut position on the PASOK proposal and announce whether there was any other investment scheme interested in OA.

    He accused the government of segmental sell-off of the airline, instead of adopting a viable solution, adding that the process of direct negotiations being followed by the government was not at all similar with the Alitalia solution, since the government has not set up a consortium of investors.

    Sifounakis also said that PASOK proposes that the 290 million euros won by OA in court be used to cover, with state participation, the new mixed scheme, while the management should be a politically neutral one.

    [02] Deputy FM meets Chinese counterpart

    Deputy Foreign Minister Theodoros Kassimis held talks in Athens on Thursday with his visiting Chinese counterpart Wu Hongbo, as the two reviewed the course of Greek-Sino relations, especially after the reciprocal visits of the two countries' presidents last year.

    As it was ascertained, relations between Greece and China have been enhanced in all sectors, political, economic and cultural, following the signing of a Strategic Partnership Relationship by the prime ministers of the two countries in 2006.

    Greece-China cooperation, according to a foreign ministry announcement, is based on "respect of steadfast principles and values, such as International Law and treaties, UN resolutions and support for world peace."

    [03] Hubner briefed by Greek leadership; addresses R&D seminar in Athens

    EU funds earmarked for "green" energy projects in Greece through the 4th Community Support Framework programme will be increased by 4 pct, Regional Policy Commissioner Danuta Hübner told reporters here on Wednesday, following a meeting with Greek Development Minister Costis Hatzidakis.

    Hübner said a 3rd Community Support Framework programme will end in June this year, giving Greece enough time to fully absorb EU funds, while she stressed that the Union was focusing on the "green economy" and supporting small-to-medium-sized enterprises amid the ongoing severe international economic crisis.

    The EU Commissioner urged Greek enterprises to invest on innovation and expressed her satisfaction over progress of a government-sponsored programme to offer financial support to SMEs.

    Speaking to reporters, the Greek minister said the government would not spare "one single euro" from EU funds and underlined the significance of efforts made by Greek SMEs to use technology and to adopt innovation.

    Earlier, Hübner expressed her satisfaction over Greece's high absorption rates of European funds during a meeting with Interior Minister Prokopis Pavlopoulos.

    The EU Commissioner, who was also received by Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis, was due in the northwest lake-side city of Ioannina on Thursday afternoon to tour an EU-financed project.

    Address at one-day seminar on R&D, innovation

    Hübner was also the keynote speaker at a one-day seminar entitled "Innovation, Research & Development in the Framework of European Regional Policy", which took place at the Zappeion Hall in the Greek capital's centre.

    Hatzidakis also addressed the seminar on the theme of "R&D in Greece: Developments and Prospects".

    The seminar was organised in Athens by Greek MEP Emmanouil Angelakas, under the auspices of European Parliament.

    In his address, on the subject of "Eco-innovation", the ND and EPP deputy outlined the Union's ambitious initiatives in the wider sector, i.e. Intelligent Energy Europe, Enterprise Europe Network, the Marco Polo Programme and Eco-Innovation.

    He also reiterated a definition of eco-innovation as best described by the phrase "good for business, good for the environment", noting that the term can also be linked with the development of innovative products and methods that reduce environmental costs, and in commercial applications that contribute to ecological improvements and assist in sustainable growth.

    Among others, Angelakas gave two specific instances where "eco-innovation" could be applied immediately in Greece, namely in the establishment of a comprehensive system for recycling agriculture plastics, and in the management of wine-making industry waste and by-products.

    [04] FinMin on liquidity

    A government-sponsored programe to boost liquidity in the economy was in full swing, Economy and Finance Minister Yiannis Papathanasiou said on Thursday. Presenting the names of state representatives to the board of commercial banks participating in the programe, the Greek minister added that the government was determine to ensure the efficient implementation of the programe in order to have the maximum benefit for the market, enterprises and households.

    The state's representataives to banks' boards are: Alexandros Makridis, economist, in National Bank, Euripides Abatzis, economist, ATEbank, George Rizos, economist, Attica Bank, Aggelos Androulidakis, lawyer, Hellenic Postbank, George Mergos, University professor, Alpha Bank, George Hiotis University professor (ret), Piraeus Bank, Damianos Damianos, cheminal engineer-economist, Eurobank, Vasilis Panagiotopoulos, lawyer, Panhellenic Bank and Stamatis Mavros, economist, Proton Bank.

    All representatives have the right to veto any decision regarding dividend payment or bonuses to board members and executives, while they have unlimited access to banks' books.

    [05] Greek stocks end 1.31% higher

    Greek stocks ended higher at the Athens Stock Exchange on Thursday, following a rebound in other European markets. The composite index rose 1.31 pct to end at 1,541.43 points, with turnover at 113.9 million euros, of which 5.9 million euros were block trades.

    Most sectors moved higher, with the Healthcare (3.84 pct), Personal/Home Products (3.78 pct) and Raw Materials (2.15 pct) scoring the biggest percentage gains of the day, while Commerce (1.59 pct), Insurance (1.13 pct) and Chemicals (0.87 pct) suffered losses.

    The FTSE 20 index rose 1.19 pct, the FTSE 40 index ended 2.37 pct higher and the FTSE 80 index rose 0.83 pct. Broadly, decliners led advancers by 97 to 93 with another 61 issues unchanged.

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