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Athens News Agency: News in English, 09-05-12

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

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] Greek economy to shrink by 1% in '09, Eurobank report
  • [02] HK Trade Dev'p Council trade fairs, contacts in Greece
  • [03] Minister tours runway extension works at Thessaloniki's Macedonia Airport
  • [04] EcoGreens unveil election ticket
  • [05] FinMin: Economy resists crisis

  • [01] Greek economy to shrink by 1% in '09, Eurobank report

    The Greek economy will shrink by 1.0 pct this year after a growth rate of 2.9 pct in 2008, Eurobank announced on Tuesday.

    In a quarterly bulletin on the economy, edited by Gkikas Hardouvelis, the groupās economic advisor, and Platon Monokrousos, the Greece-based bank said the economy maintained some additional resistance compared with other Eurozone economies, which could moderate the negative impact form an international financial crisis, such as community fund inflows, low dependence on exports and a continuing increase of real incomes in the country.

    Eurobank said it expected the inflation rate to fall below 1.0 pct in the next 2-3 months for an average annual inflation rate of 1.1-1.2 pct this year.

    The bank said an updated target of cutting the fiscal deficit to 3.7 pct of GDP was ambitious and warned that without additional fiscal measures the budget deficit could surpass 6.0 pct of GDP.

    [02] HK Trade Dev'p Council trade fairs, contacts in Greece

    The Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) will be holding a number of international trade fairs in the second half of 2009 to showcase what it called "rewarding opportunities" to Greek businesses.

    Along those lines, Raymond Yip, the assistant executive director of HKTDC, is on a visit to Greece to highlight the importance of HKTDC trade fairs. He is expected to meet with government officials and corporate sector entities to discuss business co-operation and trade potential between Greece and Hong Kong.

    ?HKTDC is staging several major international trade fairs in the coming months, some of which are the largest of their kind in Asia,? Yip told at a media gathering, adding: ?In 2007, Greece ranked 35th in terms of outward foreign direct investment at US$31 billion (23 billion Euros). To harness the potential of Greece, we will market our fairs intensively to encourage more trade with this market.?

    [03] Minister tours runway extension works at Thessaloniki's Macedonia Airport

    Transport and Communications Minister Evripides Stylianidis on Tuesday toured visited Thessaloniki's Macedonia Airport to inspect works for the expansion of runway 10-28, expected to be completed in July 2011, an upgrade that will allow the airport to accommodate long-haul airplanes.

    The 246-million-euro project will also solve the airport's nagging visibility problem, as early morning fog often leads to flight cancellations.

    As regards the cargo terminal, Stylianidis stated that its second and third sections have been completed.

    Roughly 4.3 million passengers used Macedonia Airport in 2008, while in April 2009 arrivals and departures increased 8 pct, with arrivals being increased 15 pct compared to last year.

    [04] EcoGreens unveil election ticket

    Greece's Ecologists-Greens (or EcoGreens) party on Tuesday unveiled their list of candidates for the European Parliament elections on June 7, during a press conference given by a member of the party's executive secretariat Katia Lebesi.

    The party intends to field 22 candidates in total, while the ticket is headed by Mihalis Tremopoulos.

    "The Ecologists Greens express the flowering of new values on the level of politics and daily life," Tremopoulos said. Fellow-candidate Nikos Chrysogelos, third on the list, stressed that the current deep economic, social and environmental crisis demanded answers that addressed the problems as a whole, so that the party's slogan was "Green solution for the crisis".

    The newly-emerged party has links with the European Greens, while in recent opinion polls it gained percentages that were above the threshold for getting into Parliament and not far below those of the current fifth party in the House, the Popular Orthodox Rally (LAOS).

    Regarding the reactions against EcoGreens from the left-wing parties in Parliament, another candidate Antonis Kafetzopoulos noted that "violent verbal reactions are to be expected from parties that feel like the owners of votes".

    [05] FinMin: Economy resists crisis

    The Greek economy is showing greater resistance to a global economic crisis compared with other Eurozone countries, according to the European Commission's latest economic forecasts, Economy and Finance Minister Yiannis Papathanassiou said during a press conference in Athens focusing on joint projects between public and private sector enterprises.

    "Economic growth in Greece is projected to be negative in 2009, without taking into account the positive impact from a recent package of measures taken by the government to boost building activity, the new car market and employment," Papathanassiou said.

    The minister stressed that the economy would fare better than forecasts made so far because of its dynamism over the last few years and the government's plan to support the real economy and weaker sectors of the economy.

    "Joint projects between public and private sector companies are the modern way of financing infrastructure projects. Since 2006, the inter-ministerial commission has approved 52 projects, budgeted at 5.7 billion euros."

    Papathanassiou underlined that joint projects were not the only reforms implemented by the government.

    He also underlined that the government is determined to stick to its structural reform programme, which started in 2004.

    "We are determined to achieve fiscal consolidation within set timetables and not because the European Union demands it, but mainly because it is to the national interest," he said.


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