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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 13-02-20

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] SYRIZA on Samaras, Hollande's meeting
  • [02] National Bank acquires 84.35 pct of Eurobank's shares
  • [03] FM: French interested in energy, ports and real estate
  • [04] Greek-French agreement on tourism signed

  • [01] SYRIZA on Samaras, Hollande's meeting

    AMNA--Main opposition Radical Left Coalition (SYRIZA) party charged Prime Minister Antonis Samaras with using French President Francois Hollande's visit to Athens on Tuesday for public relations purposes.

    "Once again, Samaras is limiting Greece's international contacts to the level of public relations to create a manufactured image of optimism that has nothing to do with reality," SYRIZA said in an announcement.amna

    "Investments, development and the battle against unemployment cannot be achieved through continuing the catastrophic austerity policy that is devastating to Greece and dismantling Europe. They cannot be achieved by a prime minister and a government committed to memorandums, who did not take advantage of the IMF's mistake on the fiscal multiplier in negotiations, and who remains voiceless at European level, without having put forth any position on a socially just exit from the crisis."

    [02] National Bank acquires 84.35 pct of Eurobank's shares

    AMNA--Eurobank is officially a member of National Bank Group following the successful completion of a public offer tender under which National Bank acquired 84.35 pct of Eurobank's equity capital.

    In a message to the Group's staff, National Bank's chief executive Alexandros Tourkolias, said that "National Bank and Eurobank are joining their forces creating the largest banking group in the country, capable to successfully meet the challenges facing the Greek financial system".

    "With our decision to move forward with this strategic move, the bank has laid the foundations to achieve adequate and rapid recapitalization, to boost its liquidity, rationalizing operating costs and containing bad loans," Tourkolias said, adding that "our goals is to create the necessary preconditions which will contribute to the restoring of confidence to the Greek financial system and to offer increased funding to the real economy. The new group will have a wide range of customer service in Greece and in the basic regional markets of Southeastern Europe".amna

    The Greek banker expressed his certainty that National Bank Group's employees will support this complex endeavour to jointly create one of the largest and more dynamic banks in Europe, "capable of playing a leading role in a recovery process of the country".

    Eurobank will continue operating as an autonomous bank until a legal merger is completed, probably by summer. The two banks will launch a joint commission, comprising executives from both banks, to begin a coordinated cooperation between them.amna

    [03] FM: French interested in energy, ports and real estate

    AMNA--French investment interest in Greece relates to energy, the ports, marinas and real estate, Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras told AMNA WebTV following the visit of French President Francois Hollande and Finance Minister Pierre Moscovici in Athens on Tuesday.

    Asked to comment on his meeting with Moscovici, Stournaras said they discussed the current economy, reviewed the past few months and he acknowledged France's support. "But we also said that Greece must now revive, (it is time to) speak about investments. There is fairly high interest and we discussed the importance of joint venture investments in Greece," Stournaras said.

    "Development is the greatest solution to unemployment," Stournaras added, "especially when unemployment figures for young people are tragic, at 60 percent."amna

    In terms of how France might be able to help Greece under its own development difficulties, the finance minister replied, "Investments depend on comparative advantages, which means that Greece and France have different comparative advantages. There is, however, a common, mutual interest."amna

    Asked whether he saw growth in Europe in the near future, Stournaras said, "Of course, the eurozone crisis has now made us wiser and we all know that we must have growth if we do not wish to see phenomena like those we saw here and in other countries a few months ago."

    [04] Greek-French agreement on tourism signed

    AMNA--Greece and France signed a major agreement on tourism during French President Francois Hollande's visit to Athens, Tourism Minister Olga Kefalogianni told AMNA WebTV on Wednesday.

    The first step towards the agreement was initiated during her meeting with her French counterpart in December in Paris, Kefalogianni said, when the two ministers discussed the need to expand and enhance Greek-French cooperation in "a very crucial sector to both countries." amna

    "France is top tourism destination in the world and has an exceptional organisation in its tourism, therefore we believe that it can assist us in our efforts to re-organise the public sector in anything relating to tourism."amna

    The Tourism Minister added that Greece wanted to attract more French tourists to Greece and to increase the Greek tourist flow to France by offering new products. "We will have a series of meetings in Paris in the near future with representatives of tourism agencies from both countries because we believe that politicians should create the framework within which the private sector moves to benefit development and the opening of jobs in France and Greece respectively," she noted.

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