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

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

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] New 'metropolitan' transport authority for Athens
  • [02] Foreign model arrested, linked to international prostitution racket
  • [03] Building activity down
  • [04] Economy shrank 2.5pct
  • [05] ASE opening: Decline
  • [06] Athens Newspaper Headlines

  • [01] New 'metropolitan' transport authority for Athens

    The Athens Urban Transport Organization (OASA) will be replaced by a Metropolitan Urban Transport Authority, Infrastructures, Transport and Networks Minister Dimitris Reppas announced Wednesday.

    The goal of the endeavour will be to reduce the cost of operation, improve transport coordination and services and increase the number of passengers using public transport on a daily basis.

    Under the new authority will be placed the Athens-Piraeus Electric Railways (ISAP), the tram and suburban railway, the metro, the ETHEL buses, the Athens-Piraeus Area Trolley Buses (ILPAP), part of Attiki Odos motorway, and the intercity buses (KTEL) operating within the limits of Attica.

    The minister pointed out that ticket prices will not be raised in 2010.

    [02] Foreign model arrested, linked to international prostitution racket

    A 22-year-old Hungarian model was led before a public prosecutor on Wednesday, following her arrest by the Athens police vice squad the previous day for prostitution. Police say the girl is suspected of working for an international prostitution racket that booked sex appointments over the Internet.

    Police said they had evidence that the girl was working on behalf of a pimping ring that offered sex appointments with models over the Internet for sums ranging from 250 euros to 1,000 euros. The 22-year-old told police that she had never met the people behind the ring, which has bases in Amsterdam, Moscow, Budapest and Prague, but deposited the earnings from her worldwide tours in a different bank account each time.

    In the hotel room, police found and confiscated the sum of 3,100 euros, a large number of hand-written notes with the e-mail addresses and telephone numbers of clients and the addresses and telephone numbers of various hotels around Europe.

    Prostitution in Greece is only legal in brothels having permits, with women that are registered as prostitutes and pass regular medical examinations.

    [03] Building activity down

    Building activity (volume) in the private sector dropped 20.2 pct in the January-March period this year, compared with the corresponding period in 2009, the Hellenic Statistical Authority said on Wednesday, with only three regions reporting an increase in building volume (western Macedonia 54 pct, northern Aegean 25.4 pct and Ionian Islands 24.9 pct).

    The number of building permits fell 2.8 pct in the first quarter of 2010. Building activity (volume), fell 36.3 pct in March, while the number of permits rose 3.6 pct in the month.

    [04] Economy shrank 2.5pct

    The Greek economy shrank by 2.5 pct in the first quarter of 2010 reflecting a significant decline in investments and consumption in the country, the Hellenic Statistical Authority said on Wednesday. The statistics service, in a report, revised downwards its initial estimates for the country's Gross Domestic Product (2.3 pct), after shrinking by 1.0 pct in the first quarter of 2009 and by 2.0 pct last year as a whole. The country's Finance Minister George Papakonstantinou expects the country's GDP to shrink by 4.0 pct this year.

    Gross investments on fixed capital fell 14.6 pct (16.7 pct on houses, 10 pct on machinery equipment and 29.3 pct on other constructions, while transport equipment recorded an 8.4 pct increase). Total consumption spending fell 0.7 pct (reflecting a 9.0 pct decline in public consumption and an 1.5 pct rise in private consumption), while exports fell 0.5 pct (exports of goods fell 3.9 pct, while exports of services rose 1.9 pct) and imports dropped 6.6 pct (imports of goods fell 11.1 pct and imports of services rose 10.7 pct). The country's trade deficit fell 15.8 pct in the January-March period, compared with the same period last year. The statistics service said total Gross Added Value fell 3.2 pct in the first three months of the year, reflecting declines of 5.3 pct in manufacturing, 24.6 pct in construction, 1.9 pct in commerce and other services by 2.9 pct. Added value rose in farming (1.7 PCT) and financial services (0.2 pct). Wages fell 1.2 pct in the first quarter of 2010.

    [05] ASE opening: Decline

    Equity prices were declining at the opening of trade on Thursday on the Athens Stock Exchange (ASE), with the basic share price index down 0.77 percent, standing at 1,450.55 points at 11:00 am, and turnover at 9.237 million euros, after Wednesday's strong 3.76 percent rebound.

    Individual sector indices were moving mostly downward, with the biggest gains in Mass Media, up 1.29 percent; and Food & Beverage, up 0.75 percent.

    The biggest losses were in Health, down 2.43 percent; and Construction, down 2.43 percent.

    The FTSE/ASE 20 index for blue chip and heavily traded stocks was down 1.13 percent, the FTSE/ASE MID 40 index was down 0.82 percent, and the FTSE/ASE-80 small cap index was down 0.12 percent.

    Of the stocks traded, 21 were up, 35 were down, and 20 were unchanged.

    [06] Athens Newspaper Headlines

    The Thursday edition of Athens' dailies at a glance

    Developments in the Siemens case, the social security system, the labour issue and Finance Ministry George Papaconstantinou's reassurance that the next loan package from the EU-IMF is secured, and Prime Minister George Papandreou's visit to Libya dominated the headlines on Thursday in Athens' newspapers.

    ADESMEFTOS TYPOS: "Parliamentary fact-finding commission on Siemens scandal decided the opening of 25 bank accounts".

    APOGEVMATINI: "Huge increases in real estate objective values".

    AVGHI: "Government discussing the possibility of concession of management of the Water Board to private companies".

    AVRIANI: "Bank accounts of professionals, contractors and go-betweens implicated in Siemens case to open".

    ELEFTHEROS TYPOS: "Siemens scandal: The list with the names".

    ELEFTHEROTYPIA: "Lay-offs: Easy and cheap".

    ESTIA: "Greece produces bureaucracy- It is the main obstacle to development".

    ETHNOS: "Reversals from the drop in university entry base passing grades".

    IMERISSIA: "Reserved optimism - The second installment of the loan secured".

    KATHIMERINI: "Provocative 1.3 billion euros 'favour' to former Olympic Airlines employees".

    LOGOS: "Political figures on Siemens lists".

    NAFTEMPORIKI: "Upcoming 'troika' inspection, with lower deficit".

    NIKI: "The course to the ballots - Five parametres that will judge the recourse to double elections (early general and scheduled local government elections) in November".

    RIZOSPASTIS: "The people shouldn't pay for the debts and the deficits- Not a single euro for the plutocracy".

    TA NEA: "Reversals in labour relations through express procedures".

    TO VIMA: "25 persons alleged to be involved in the Siemens case under the microscope".

    VRADYNI: "Growth policy is the answer to the disaster scenarios".


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