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Athens News Agency: News in English, 09-06-10

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] EU-hosted event for Euro-elections mostly ignored in Skopje
  • [02] CEDEFOP con'f on skill supply in Europe
  • [03] Ex-Siemens Hellas head arrested, to appear before magistrate on Fri.
  • [04] Internal criticism following SYRIZA results in Euro-election
  • [05] Stocks end 2.43% higher

  • [01] EU-hosted event for Euro-elections mostly ignored in Skopje

    SKOPJE (ANA-MPA / N. Frangopoulos) -- Top office-holders and MPs in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (fYRoM) reportedly stayed away from an election watch event here on Sunday evening, hosted by the head of the EU's diplomatic mission to fYRoM, Amb. Erwan Fouere, to view results of European Parliament elections.

    The mostly unattended event was held at the mission's offices in Skopje.

    According to a private television station here, not one of the 120 MPs in fYRoM's Parliament took up Fouere's invitation.

    [02] CEDEFOP con'f on skill supply in Europe

    The number of adult employees, over the age of 25, with high level education is expected to increase by 20 million in the EU until the year 2020, corresponding to a 40-pct increase compared to 2007, with the most notable increase recorded among the young and women, according to the "Skill Supply in Europe: Medium-term Forecast Until 2020" -- published by the Thessaloniki-based European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training (CEDEFOP) this week.

    The biggest rise is expected in Portugal and Poland, with an annual increase of 5 pct, while Denmark will maintain its lead with the largest percentage of working people with high-level skills.

    Meanwhile, during the same period, the number of adults with medium-level qualifications will also increase by an estimated 6 million, mostly in Spain and Portugal.

    The results of the study will be presented in a CEDEFOP conference entitled "Matching skills and jobs: anticipating needs in challenging times" to take place at the agency's offices in Thessaloniki on June 11-12.

    [03] Ex-Siemens Hellas head arrested, to appear before magistrate on Fri.

    The up-until-recently general director of Siemens Hellas, Dionyssis Dendrinos, will testify before a special examiner on Friday in relation to the ongoing Siemens bribery and kickback investigation in Greece.

    Dendrinos was arrested late Tuesday night outside his residence in the Pallini municipality, southeast of Athens proper, on charges of fraud against the state. The arrest warrant was issued on June 4 following information that the one-time Siemens Hellas executive had transferred real estate holdings in Greece to his two sons, a move viewed as a "flight risk".

    Dendrinos is accused of complicity to commit fraud in relation to a massive contract between the Greek state and SAIC, a California-based technology applications firm, for the supply and installation of the much-ballyhooed C4I security system, all in the frantic run-up to 2004 Athens Olympic Games.

    According to an indictment, between 2002 and Sept. 15, 2003, Dendrinos, together with unidentified accomplices from Siemens and SAIC, maintained before responsible Greek state agencies that both SAIC and Siemens were capable of installing and operating the C4I Olympic security systems within 12 months.

    The same indictment charges that Dendrinos' statements to Greek state agencies were "entirely false", given that the aforementioned multinational companies "did not have the necessary technical infrastructure, know-how, personnel, methodology, organisation, management and the capability to prepare the studies necessary for the contract's execution."

    Based on the case against him, damages suffered along with claims against the Greek state totaled 254.9 million euros and equals the sum earmarked for Siemens and SAIC in accordance with the contractual terms.

    Dendrinos' defence attorneys filed a request with an examining magistrate to recall the arrest warrant as unlawful, maintaining that their client has no bank accounts abroad or off-shore companies and never refused to appear before judicial officials every time he received a summons.

    [04] Internal criticism following SYRIZA results in Euro-election

    Members of the "Euro left" grouping within the Coalition of the Left (Synaspismos), dubbed the so-called "renewal wing", on Wednesday offered a harsh assessment on the leftist party's lacklustre results in Sunday's European Parliament elections, stressing that the "outcome was a clear-cut defeat for the Radical Left Coalition (SYRIZA) and constitutes an outright rejection of the choices made by the Synaspismos' leadership."

    The reference was to the Synaspismos-affiliated SYRIZA leftist grouping, while the written assessment was conveyed to Synaspismos' political secretariat.

    The "Euro-left" grouping underlined that "serious rifts between the party and many of its leftist supporters" were created following the recent party convention, citing political positions adopted by the leadership of Synaspismos and SYRIZA, along with: "political arrogance" displayed when opinion polls showed skyrocketing support; mistakes and omissions made during last December's incidents and problems that resulted when the Euro-ballot list of candidates was decided.

    The "December incidents" refers to nearly a weeklong cycle of violent urban rioting in central Athens.

    "The election results and the unprecedented low voter turnout sent out loud messages of criticism, rejecting political positions across the political spectrum," the statement reads.

    Referring to the strong showing by the rightist Popular Orthodox Rally (LAOS), the faction characterised it as"the serious and alarming ascent of the xenophobic right", while calling for "democratic vigilance".

    [05] Stocks end 2.43% higher

    Greek stocks rebounded strongly at the Athens Stock Exchange on Wednesday, with the composite index of the market rising 2.43 pct to end at 2,376.11 points. Turnover was a moderate 231.2 million euros, of which 23.6 million euros were block trades.

    Most sectors moved upwards, with the Raw Materials (5.40 pct), Banks (4.51 pct) and Financial Services (4.28 pct) scoring the biggest percentage gains of the day, while Utilities (2.28 pct) and Telecommunications (0.67 pct) suffering losses.

    The FTSE 20 index rose 2.91 pct, the FTSE 40 index ended 3.73 pct higher and the FTSE 80 index rose 2.0 pct. Broadly, advancers led decliners by 180 to 55 with another 36 issues unchanged.

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