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Athens News Agency: News in English, 10-03-01

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

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] PM Papandreou to meet Olli Rehn
  • [02] Karditsa, Greece's bicycle capital
  • [03] Merkel on Greek economy
  • [04] ASE opening: Big rise
  • [05] Áthens Newspaper Headlines

  • [01] PM Papandreou to meet Olli Rehn

    Prime Minister George Papandreou will meet on Monday in Athens with European Commissioner for economic and monetary affaris Olli Rehn. According to a Commission announcement "Olli Rehn is in Athens to discuss Greece's current economic situation and the condition of the state's financials". Earlier , Papandreou will chair an Inner Cabinet meeting and in the afternoon he will have successive meetings with the President of the Socialist group in the European Parliament Martin Schulz and the Romanian Foreign Minister Teodor Baconschi.

    [02] Karditsa, Greece's bicycle capital

    An overwhelming 70 percent of the residents of the city of Karditsa, central Greece, use bicycles for transportation, according to a recent study by environmentalist Victoria Topouzi of the Karditsa Development Agency.

    According to the study Karditsa, which is situated in the heart of the Thessaly Plain, and due to its terrain, is one of the most conducive cities for the use of bicycles as a means of transport.

    Indeed, each family has more than one bicycle, while many families have a bicycle for each member, the study showed.

    Further, the bicycle is preferred by all social and financial groups of the local population, and regardless of place of residence (city center, surrounding districts).

    The bicycle, an environment-friendly form of transport accessible to all ages and pockets, is used for work, entertainment, shopping and exercise, the study showed. The main purpose, however, is commuting to and from work, for adults, and for transport to and from school by children (37 percent), the study said.

    [03] Merkel on Greek economy

    Berlin (ANA-MPA/P. Stangos) -- German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Sunday denied reports that an item would be entered in the German budget in view of possible economic aid to Greece, and ruled out any prospect of a bailout, stressing that what is essential is the materialisation of the measures that have been announced by the Greek government so as to gain the confidence of the markets.

    In a televised interview on ARD public television, ahead of a meeting on Friday with Greek prime minister George Papandreou, whom she has invited to Berlin, Merkel said that, for the time being, the best way to help Greece is to make it clear that it has to fulfill its duties.

    She reiterated he concern over the pressures on the euro in the midst of the chiefly Greek crisis, and insisted on the necessity of tackling the problem at its roots.

    Noting Greece's high deficit and "lost credibility", Merkel said she appreciated the fact that the Greek government is planning very courageous economising and structural measures, adding that it now must be ensured that the European Commission, the European Central Bank (ECB) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) will be convinced that the Greek Stability Program and spending cuts will be able to truly solve the problems.

    Asked if "German billions" will be needed to bail out Greece, citing reports that a relevant item will be entered in the German budget, Merkel said that "there is no question" of such an eventuality, and cited the "No Bailout" clause in the EU Treaty.

    She said that "right now we can help Greece by stating clearly that it has to fulfill its duties", and clarified that no other decisions have been taken.

    Caption:ANA-MPA/EPA file photo of German Chancellor Angela Merkel. EPA/WOLFGANG KUMM

    [04] ASE opening: Big rise

    Equity prices were rising at the opening of trade on Monday on the Athens Stock Exchange (ASE), with the basic share price index up 2.69 percent, standing at 1,964.55 points at 11:00 a.m., and turnover at 33.208 million euros.

    Individual sector indices were moving upward nearly across the board with the biggest gains in Telecoms, up 3.97 percent; and Banks, up 3.27 percent.

    The FTSE/ASE 20 index for blue chip and heavily traded stocks was up 2.87 percent, the FTSE/ASE MID 40 index was up 2.13 percent, and the FTSE/ASE-80 small cap index was up 1.73 percent.

    Of the stocks moved, 84 were up, 5 were down, and 10 were unchanged.

    [05] Áthens Newspaper Headlines

    The Monday edition of Athens' dailies at a glance

    The negotiations over additional austerity measures aiming to curtail the fiscal deficit, and European Commissioner for economic and monetary affairs Olli Rehn's arrival in Greece and his meeting on Monday with Prime Minister George Papandreou, dominated the headlines on Monday in Athens' newspapers.

    ADESMEFTOS TYPOS: "The slot machines will finance the .....'Kallikratis' public administration reform plan".

    APOGEVMATINI: "Government is 'chopping' the 13th salary and the Christmas bonus - The die has been cast by the government, which gave in to Brussels' demands".

    AVRIANI: "Society heading to rift with the political system - The austerity measures which are necessary for the country to avoid bankruptcy provoke dangerous reverberations in the two mainstream parties".

    CHORA: "Bargaining with Berlin and Washington - They are 'selling' us assistance together with F-16 and Eurofighter military jets".

    ELEFTHEROS: "Turkish frigate reached near Rafina (northeastern Athens coastal town) - Its route in the Aegean Sea, the islands it approached".

    ELEFTHEROS TYPOS: "Pressure for gradual pension cuts of up to 26 percent".

    ELEFTHEROTYPIA: "All pensions freeze - 'Passion Week' for the Greek economy".

    ESTIA: "Greece under supervision - That's where the blatant statism has led us".

    ETHNOS: "Brussels wants all the pensions to be frozen - Olli Rehn in Athens with a social 'shock' recipe".

    IMERISSIA: "Rescue ...week - Government to announce 3.5 billion euros measures".

    NAFTEMPORIKI: "Crucial negotiations on the new package of measures - European Commissioner Olli Rehn arrives in Athens on Monday".

    TA NEA: "Major upheavals in taxation system".

    VRADYNI: "Shock measures for 30 billion euros - French-German lending plan in exchange for harsh austerity".


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