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Athens News Agency: News in English, 12-02-23

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] ND leader opens door to expelled MPs
  • [02] Agreement signed between DEPA-Bulgargaz
  • [03] Parliament begins debate on 'PSI Bill'
  • [04] Nimetz notes 'sincere Greek desire' to resolve name issue
  • [05] FinMin Venizelos on loan contract

  • [01] ND leader opens door to expelled MPs

    AMNA-New Democracy (ND) leader Antonis Samaras on Wednesday referred to the Eurogroup agreement on Greece saying that the country bought time in its effort to get out of the crisis.

    Speaking during a meeting of ND's executive bureau, Samaras reiterated that Eurobonds should be issued and underlined that the adoption of measures for economic growth wins growing support in Europe. He also referred to the importance of the exploitation of the Greek Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).

    Samaras stressed that political normalcy should be restored in the country and pointed out that his goals are to stop recession and boost social cohesion. amna

    He repeated that elections should take place in the immediate future, stressing that they will be the most decisive since 1974. amna

    Samaras opened the ND’s doors to all the MPs that were expelled from the party, underlining the importance of unity “in the battle that will be given after the elections”.

    “All are indispensable,” he said, stressing that the major battle for economic growth will be launched immediately after the elections.

    [02] Agreement signed between DEPA-Bulgargaz

    AMNA--A cooperation contract between Greece's Public Gas Corporation (DEPA) and the Bulgarian Bulgargaz company on the mutual coverage of possible shortages with natural gas due to extraordinary conditions, has been signed in Sofia by DEPA's president and managing director Haris Sahinis and Dimitar Gogov, the managing director of Bulgargaz.

    According to the contract's terms, DEPA will be procuring natural gas from Bulgargaz for the coverage of extraordinary needs of the Greek market and correspondingly it will supply the Bulgarian company when similar needs appear in the Bulgarian market. Another term foresees that the supplying of the Bulgarian network by DEPA will be taking place provided that the smooth supplying of the Greek market is not upset. amna

    DEPA and Bulgargaz are already cooperating for the construction of the Greece-Bulgaria (IGB) pipeline, a project that is expected to begin in the last quarter of 2012.

    [03] Parliament begins debate on 'PSI Bill'

    AMNA--Parliament on Thursday morning began a debate on a bill that will ratify the PSI bonds swap deal that will reduce Greece's debt by some 100 billion euros, which will be voted on the same evening.

    The bill on "regulations for modification of titles, issues or guarantees by the Greek state in agreement with the Bond-holders", also known as the PSI Bill, was introduced in the plenary of the 300-member unicameral parliament under "urgent" procedures, which provide for a discussion of up to 10 hours before the bill is voted on.

    The two Left groupings in parliament -- the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) and the Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA parliamentary alliance) -- via MPs Thanassis Pafilis (KKE) and Dimitris Papadimoulis (SYRIZA) strongly objected to the procedure, while Popular Orthodox Rally (LAOS) MP Alekos Chryssanthakopoulos charged that the procedure being followed was muzzling the deputies.

    Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos replied that he could not understand their persistence in objecting the procedure of "urgent", charging that those who do not accept the procedure "are not aware of or do not realise at what point the country is in". He also called on the dissenters to "state openly that they do not want the country to shed 130 billion euros and 50 points of its debt".

    Pafilis told the minister to "stop fooling and coercing the people'amna

    'You are lying that they will be relieved by 130 billion euros. What will the working people gain? The banks and the monopolies will gain," Pafilis said.

    Papadimoulis, in turn, said that "we have a government that, hand-in-hand with the troika, has turned parliament into a decision-poster", while Chryssanthakopoulos charged that "the pressure you are exerting creates anomaly. The (plenary) hall is not filling up because the MPs are not being given the floor".amna

    PASOK deputy Christos Protopapas, responding, said that "completing the ratification of the bill today (Thursday) is a matter of national duty, everything else is populism".

    [04] Nimetz notes 'sincere Greek desire' to resolve name issue

    AMNA-- United Nations special envoy Matthew Nimetz, the UN mediator in the name dispute between Greece and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM), on Wednesday noted the Greek side's sincere desire to resolve the name issue following his meeting in Athens with Greek Foreign Minister Stavros Dimas.

    In statements after the meeting, Nimetz said that he briefed the Greek minister on his recent contacts in FYROM and that Dimas had encouraged him to continue his efforts to find a mutually acceptable solution.

    Asked whether upcoming elections in Greece will affect the process, Nimetz noted that it was natural to hold elections in a democracy and that if elections were declared, he would await for the next government in Greece.amna

    He also noted, however, that while he was aware of the challenges facing Greece as a result of the economic crisis, he was convinced that there was a functioning government in the country at the present time and that it was able to deal with the problems and also occupy itself with the issue of resolving the name dispute.

    [05] FinMin Venizelos on loan contract

    AMNA--Government Vice President and Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos, speaking in an interview with the Mega television channel on Wednesday evening, said "there is no question of default, there is no question of the economy's collapse," adding that "some are finally abandoning the thought that the solution for Greece is default or an exit from the euro."

    Venizelos stressed that with the loan contract liquidity in the economy will be strengthened, either through the payment of the state's outstanding commitments to businesses or through the banks in which, after the recapitalisation, the State will have the share majority, even if it does not exercise administration. amna

    Also according to the minister, the exit from the recession, that is amounting to 20 units accumulatively over the past years, will come with the speeding up of the structural changes and the decrease in prices, particularly in consumer goods. amna

    Venizelos criticised all the opposition parties, even speaking of a "dangerous card playing conception" for their opposition to the decisions taken at the Eurogroup and the tough fiscal and tax measures.

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