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Athens News Agency: News in English, 10-04-07

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

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] PM urges focus on problems, not rumours
  • [02] Stocks fall 2.98 pct

  • [01] PM urges focus on problems, not rumours

    Prime Minister George Papandreou on Wednesday urged his ministers to stop "an easy preoccupation" with rampant rumours and turn their attention to tackling the country's problems.

    Speaking during a meeting of the full cabinet, he underlined that the government will continue strict implementation of the Stability and Growth programme while curbing wasteful public spending and fighting tax evasion as it launched the country into a growth trajectory.

    Papandreou stressed that the agreement on an EU mechanism to support Greece had marked a happy ending to the previous period, which had been dominated by the economic crisis, and marked a landmark success for Greece, as well as the European Union.

    "We could say that we created and ensured a safety net for Greece and any other country that faces a similar problem," he noted. Through this mechanism's existence, Greece had now entered a period where its problems would be manageable, Papandreou said.

    The task that now lay ahead was for Greece to acquire long-term credibility, Papandreou added, in addition to the short-term credibility won by the new government through a new attitude and its determination to make necessary changes.

    "The Greek people have at this time proved that they possess both maturity and a desire for changes, provided that these are inspired by the principles of reliable governance, social justice, a fair distribution of burdens and wealth, transparency and collective effort," he stressed.

    Wednesday's cabinet meeting focused mainly on a draft bill presented by Environment, Energy and Climate Change Minister Tina Birbili concerning illegally enclosed 'semi-outdoor' structures on buildings, such as balconies and porches.

    The prime minister said the bill would mark a final solution to this problem while also creating a framework for major improvements in cities like Athens, with the project for redeveloping the Faliro seafront and the 'twin urban regeneration' plan in the city centre, linked to the building of the Athens Panathinaikos club's new soccer stadium.

    [02] Stocks fall 2.98 pct

    Greek stocks lost more ground on the Athens Stock Exchange on Wednesday, diving on news that bond spreads had shot up to 409 basis points. The composite index of the market plunged 2.98 pct to end at 1,987.58 points, with turnover at 201.394 million euros.

    The FTSE 20 index plunged 3.06 pct, the FTSE 40 index dipped 3.74 pct lower and the FTSE 80 index dropped 1.58 pct. The Insurance (2.26 pct) and Media (1.78 pct) sectors scored the biggest percentage gains of the day, while Personal & Household (-5.65 pct) and Banks (-4.21 pct) suffered the biggest losses.

    Broadly, decliners led advancers by 135 to 37 with another 50 issues unchanged.


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