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Athens News Agency: News in English, 11-10-13

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

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] Greek budget deficit at 19.163 bln euros in January-September
  • [02] Greece, Turkey eye joint tourism packages, promotion
  • [03] ND bashes gov't over public sector hirings
  • [04] Stocks up thanks to 'technical rebound' on Wed.

  • [01] Greek budget deficit at 19.163 bln euros in January-September

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    AMNA / Greece's budget deficit totalled 19.163 billion euros in the January-September period this year, slightly down from a revised 2012 budget target, but sharply up from 16.650 billion euros in the corresponding period in 2010, the Finance ministry said on Wednesday.

    The ministry, in an announcement, said that state budget revenues rose by 5.0 million euros, compared with revised targets to 34.980 billion euros, for a growth rate of 4.2 pct in the nine-month period, down from 5.3 pct in the eight-month period of 2011.

    The ministry attributed this development mainly to higher-than-expected economic recession in the country. Public Investments Program's revenues grew 39.2 pct or 529 million euros compared with the nine-month period in 2010. The ministry said that slower revenue growth was expected to be covered in the fourth quarter of the year with the implementation of additional measures included in a medium-term fiscal program (2011-2015). AMNA

    Regular budget spending grew 7.0 pct in the January-September period, compared with the same period last year, reflecting higher interest spending (2.381 billion euros), higher subsidies to social insurance funds and higher payments to state hospitals. AMNA

    [02] Greece, Turkey eye joint tourism packages, promotion

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    AMNA / The tourism sector has emerged as a pylon of economic growth and stability, a fact that will be confirmed with the signing of a protocol of cooperation between Greece and Turkey, it was underlined on Wednesday during the 8th Greece-Turkey Forum on tourism.

    Addressing the forum, Culture & Tourism Minister Pavlos Geroulanos underlined that target markets for the two countries should include India, China, Japan and North America, while he focused on the obstacles that need to be overcome, namely, simplification of visa issuance procedures.

    He also referred to the importance of joint travel packages offered by Greece and Turkey, ones that will feature common tourism products, such as familiarisation trips and promotion programmes. AMNA

    On his part, Turkey's Culture & Tourism Minister, Ertugrul Gunay, praised the atmosphere existing between the two countries and underlined that the Aegean can serve as a “life vest” amid the economic crisis. He also said joint participation of the two countries in international tourism exhibitions in shared pavilions is very important move, one aimed at attracting specialised markets.

    As regards the spectrum of bilateral cooperation, the Turkish minister stressed that it ranges from attracting investments to developing sea cruise and religious tourism, suggesting that a forum should be held at least every two years. AMNA

    [03] ND bashes gov't over public sector hirings

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    AMNA / Main opposition New Democracy (ND) party spokesman on Wednesday again referred to the issue of hirings in the public sector by ruling PASOK since it came to power in October 2009, condemning "the creation of new state structures that constitute a morbid version of partisanship and nepotism".

    ND spokesman Yiannis Mihelakis stressed that "the government is implementing a plan of mass layoffs and at the same time insists an inflated and extravagant state by setting up roughly 70 new state structures; proceeding with illegal hirings in 2010; increasing the number of employees transferred to ministers' offices and planning more hirings. Such practices create a major economic, political and ethical issue and constitute a blatant injustice to thousands of employees." AMNA

    Referring to recurring speculation over political consensus between the two mainstream parties, Mihelakis said that "we are witnessing consensus, on behalf of PASOK MPs, vis-a-vis the positions expressed by ND".

    On the unrelated issue of tons of uncollected garbage in the country's major cities as a result of a sanitation workers' strike, he said "the situation is tragic ... and the government’s position is unacceptable".

    Finally, as regards the discovery of possible natural gas deposits within Cyprus' EEZ, Mihelakis said "the development is very positive and its benefits are present, because Cyprus acted quickly in declaring its EEZ". amnA

    [04] Stocks up thanks to 'technical rebound' on Wed.

    AMNA /

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    Stocks ended strongly higher at the Athens Stock Exchange, in what traders described as a technical rebound of the market after a 20-pct plunge in the bank index in the previous two sessions.

    The composite index of the market jumped 475 pct to end at 759.89 points. The market reacted positively to speculation of a 30-35 pct haircut in Greek bonds, lower than earlier speculation of a 50-60 pct rate. Turnover, however, remained a disappointing low 55.512 million euros.

    The Big Cap index jumped 6.23 pct, the Mid Cap index ended 4.03 pct higher and the Small Cap index rose 3.05 pct.


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