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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 05-08-26

The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <>


  • [01] Qualification: Mission Possible
  • [02] "We Honour Our Pledges"
  • [03] Molyviatis-Straw Discussion
  • [04] Premier for New Trading Hours
  • [05] Recall of Hyundai Models
  • [06] Merkel Unleashes Head-on Attack
  • [07] Euro-Med Meeting over Industry
  • [08] Pessimism Over Oil Record Prices
  • [09] "PASOK has A Programme"
  • [10] "Government Supports PPC Chairman"
  • [11] Soy Sauce Recalled
  • [12] Extension for Traffic Ring Permits

  • [01] AEK and PAOK Ready to Play Qualification: Mission Possible

    26 Aug 2005 14:13:00

    By Ilias Papaioannou

    The draw of the 1st phase of the UEFA CUP, in Monte Carlo, Monaco, selected opponents cut out to AEK and PAOKs credentials. PAOK was drawn with Ukrainian team Metalurh, while AEK with Zenit. On the other hand, Aris and Skoda Xanthi will have to outdo themselves in order to qualify against Italian Roma and British Middlesbrough, respectively. Cypriot team Anarthosis will face Italian Palermo, while APOEOL German Cherta. The first games will take place on September 15 and the repeats on September 29.

    Metalurh: Team is Weak

    PAOK will travel to the Ukraine in order to lay the founding stone for the qualification in the next UEFA Cup round. The team of Nikos Karageorgiou will face the former team of Olympiacos players Babagida and Touret.

    The Ukrainian team, due to financial problems had to give away many of its players, but is neither a hard nor an easy opponent. PAOK has the notion that the qualification of the team solely depends on their capabilities and performance.

    AEK: Eye for An Eye

    In its first game in St Petersburg AEK will have the chance to get an informal play-off over last years 5-1, which cost its disqualification from the event. At the time, Zenit has played 21 games and is in 3rd place of the Russian Cup, while it has earned a Championship and a Cup. In statements to ERA Sport, Ilia Ivic noted "AEK ought to take revenge over last years 5-1 and it is a great opportunity to win the qualification and to continue its European course in the groups."

    Unlucky Aris

    The team of Roma is surely a favorite in the matches against Aris Thessalonica but everything is possible in football. Besides the problems faced by the recent transfer embargo imposed by FIFA, Roma was justified in the CES and is quite reinforced for a good course in the Campionato, but in Europe as well. Kuffour, Cassano, Totti, Nonda, Montella are some of the star players of the Italian team that will travel to Kleanthis Vikelidis Stadium for the first game with Aris. A spokesperson of the Italian team in Monaco, Mr Tempestilli noted, "Roma and Aris have faced many problems. We know Aris has a strong home turf and the qualification will not be easy for us either, since we have to play a good game."

    On behalf of the Thessalonica team, Agapitos Abelas stated the favorite for the qualification, but expressed his satisfaction over the Italian opponent, since it is a well-known team to all. "It would be difficult if we were drawn with an unknown team. Now that we know our opponents dynamic, which has improved since last year, there is only gain from such matches." It is noteworthy to say, that the interest of the "yellows" will be great and will bring great profits for the FC.

    Xanthi Will Fight

    Skoda Xanthi will have to show its best self in order to conquer the qualification in the next phase of the event against Middlesbrough. The team of Giannis Mantzourakis will play against a mediocre British team. The opponent of the border team has the reputation of playing better away, and will fight for a qualification in Europe. Last year, Middlesbrough had met with Egaleo and easily disqualified it. Regardless of the above, Mr Matzourakis is determined to disqualify the British since as he noted, "the face value of the British team will give greater worth to our qualification."

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [02] "We Honour Our Pledges"

    26 Aug 2005 12:49:00 (Last updated: 26 Aug 2005 19:06:50)

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    Competitiveness, entrepreneurship, employment and transparency are the pillars of the governments policy, which aims at enhancing the countrys economy and growth. This is what Ministers of Economy and Development, Giorgos Alogoskoufis and Dimitris Sioufas, focused on in their addresses to NDs Central Committee. "We honour our pledges," Economy Minister Georgios Alogoskoufis said referring to the realisation of the governments plan, which is conducted with "honesty, responsibility, stability and only to the benefit of Greece." On his part, Development Minister Dimitris Sioufas pointed out, "The key goal of our development policy is to promote competitiveness of high standards," and added that the reforms aim to growth, employment, new investments and high living standards. Meanwhile, Interior Minister Prokopis Pavlopoulos and ND Secretary Vangelis Meimarakis referred to the changes in the electoral law and to the enhancement of Local Governments.

    Aiming at the Benefit of Greece

    "We promised a new relationship between the state and the citizens. We promised to handle the states affairs with honesty, responsibility and stability and to provide solutions to Greeces benefit," pointed out Mr Alogoskoufis in the beginning of his speech, and he added that the government honours its pledges and proceeds with the reforms with responsibility and well-thought moves.

    Mr Alogoskoufis repeated that the government focuses on economy growth, employment enhancement, social consistency as well as restoring transparency in the Public Sector, for they are prime prerequisites for social progress and prosperity.

    The Economy Minister went on to mention that low competitiveness, lack of transparency, ret tape and fiscal divergence were a common practice before ND assumed power, and accused PASOK of criticising and pretending that "It is unaware of the crime," despite its being responsible.

    In closing, Mr Alogoskoufis made a special reference to the main pillars of the growth plan, which include:

    Mild fiscal adjustment. Tax reform in favour of entrepreneurship and natural persons. Novel Investment Law. Partnerships between the Public and the Private Sector. New series of privatisations. Better exploitation of the 3rd Common Support Framework. New operation plan for DEKOs (Public Utilities and Enterprises).

    Competitive Greece With Quality in All Sectors

    Development Minister Dimitris Sioufas drew its attention to the everyday problems Greek citizens encounter putting emphasis on unemployment, high prices, ret tape and corruption. "We have been asserting a major lack in productivity, quality and competitiveness for years, " pointed out Mr Sioufas and added that the above are "the keys to the sustainable development, economy enhancement, income increase, employment boost and high living standards."

    The Development Minister noted, "Confronting the problems requires reforms and radical changes both in the states and in economys structures," and underlined that the governments development policy sees towards a "Competitive Greece with quality in all sectors."

    "The past has accumulated huge problems with regard to growth," Me Sioufas said and went on to argue that the government is responsible to confront them with determination to promote a new developing course of action.

    The governments immediate objectives are:

    Exploitation of the whole economy perspectives Cooperation between the state and the Private Sector. Enhancement of the economys outward looking policies. Entrepreneurship boost. Attraction of foreign investors. Encourage agriculture. Tourist growth. At the same time, he underlined that emphasis is on renewable energy sources, since Greece depends on oil twice as much as other EU Member-States, thus burdening the countrys economy.

    Furthermore, Mr Sioufas claimed that the promotion of Greek agricultural products to the international markets, the emphasis on alternative tourism, Greeces transformation into the worlds biggest shipping centre as well as the connection of education with the labour market, fall in line with the National Strategy for the regional growth.

    We Support the Local Governments

    In his speech, Interior Minister Prokopis Pavlopoulos referred to the realisation of NDs pre-election pledges with regard to the changes in the electoral law. Mr Pavlopoulos pointed out that the enhancement of the Local Governments is the governments top priority.

    Mr Pavlopoulos further added that the government has to assign the exploitation of the 4rth Community Support Framework to the Local Governments. "It is not just a matter of self-governing, but a matter of economical significance," he mentioned.

    At the same time, he praised the role played by KEP (Citizen Service Centres) noticing that the red tape is gradually dwindling, while the way citizens are dealt with is improving. "The public servants and the administration should be of the citizens service," Mr Pavlopoulos concluded.

    Reform will Arise from Dialogue

    On his part, ND Secretary Vangelis Meimarakis noted that the party supports the reforms being advanced by the Karamanlis government. Actually, he stated that ND, as a party, proposes to the PM to proceed with the reforms and to not think of the obstacle of the Municipal elections. He also noted that the reforms policy is for the good of the whole, and does not serve personal interests.

    On the issue of the new electoral bill for Local Administration, he claimed that the specific reform was a discussion topic in the partys meetings, while it was talked about and voted by the ND Conference, and blamed PASOK of self-interest over its statements. Furthermore, he noted that the issue of the first Sunday in Municipal elections is being discussed since the 80s and it is not new subject. He also did not rule out the event that candidate Mayors emerging from Municipal Councils and local referendums, and described any doubts from a current Mayor or Prefect as condemnable.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    Related News:

    "Reforms Will be Implemented"

    [03] Molyviatis-Straw Discussion

    26 Aug 2005 20:03:00

    By Despina Hristopoulou

    Sources: ANA

    The European future of Turkey, in view of the Permanent Representative Council on August 31, was on the focus of the discussion between Foreign Minister Petros Molyviatis and his British counterpart Jack Straw after the latters initiative. They also discussed the informal Foreign Ministry on September 1-2. Earlier, the FM met with a multi-member delegation of the US Congress. The main issue of the meeting was the developments in the Middle East and the Balkans, as well as Turkeys European future. According to diplomatic sources, the American Congressmen, which were accompanied by US Ambassador to Athens Charles Reese, showed special interest over the Greek views on current events, and asked for information over the countrys financial situation. According to the same sources, the prospects of the bilateral trade relations were also discussed, while the excellent relations between Athens and Washington were reconfirmed.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [04] Start Will Be Made by Department Stores Premier for New Trading Hours

    26 Aug 2005 18:49:00

    By Despina Hristopoulou

    Sources: NET 105.8

    After its publication in the Government Gazette, the bill over the extension of stores trading hours will be enforced starting on Saturday. According to the new trading hours, stores will close at 20:00 on Saturday, as opposed to 18:00 currently in force. The start will be made by department stores and will be applied to the rest of the stores. Speaking to NET 105.8, President of the Union of Retail Trade Businesses Antonis Makris noted that the new trading hours will be to the advantage of the market.

    Intense Reactions

    However, President of Union of Trade Associations Dimitris Armenakis voiced his opposition to the new trading hours, and noted that small-middle sized businesses will not extend trading hours, and will continue the fight against the new reform. GSVEs statements were along the same lines. "The measure strangles small-middle sized companies. There well be reactions starting from tomorrow," claimed member of the Athens Trade Employees Union Petros Vamvakas to NET 105.8.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [05] Recall of Hyundai Models

    26 Aug 2005 15:41:00

    By Despina Hristopoulou

    According to an announcement by General Secretary for the Consumer Thanasis Skordas, 109 Sonata-NF and 25 Tucson-JM are recalled by Hyundai Hellas and R. Davaris S.A., in cooperation with the Technical Check Directorate. In the Sonata-NF, manufactured from 1.5.2005 until 4.5.2005, the ESP system needs reprogramming, as in a road with turns, the speed of the vehicle can drop to 50km/h. 23 of the vehicles have been delivered to consumers and 86 are in authorized dealers stores. In the Tucson-JM, manufactured from 29.3.2005 until 20.5.2005, in some cases the hand brake ratchet does not operate. All the vehicles owners have been informed by Hyundai Hellas and R. Davaris S.A. The company asks for the owners to contact the company, while their cars will be repaired free of charge. For more information or clarifications the interested persons should contact the company at +0030 210-5507000.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [06] Requested Partnership, Not Accession Merkel Unleashes Head-on Attack

    26 Aug 2005 14:13:00


    Germanys conservative opposition leader Angela Merkel sent a letter to her European peers urging them to jointly block Turkeys accession to the EU. Mrs Merkel is against Turkeys full EU membership. Instead, her Christian Democratic Union (CDU/CSU) alliance suggests a privileged partnership. "We are firmly convinced that Turkeys accession would strain the EU politically, economically and socially, and endanger the European integration process," Mrs Merkel claimed in her letter. The EU has scheduled to commence talks with Turkey for October 3. In its suggestion, the European Commission refers to the accession and not to the notion of privileged partnership. Analysts say that the time Mrs Merkel chose to send her letter coincides with the unofficial talks among the 25 EU Foreign Affairs Ministers to be held on September 1 and 2 in Welsh, Britain. In the meantime, Turkish Economy Minister Ali Babacan stated that Turkey does not expect the 25 will reach an agreement during their meeting in the coming week.

    Close Linkage, But Not Accession

    Greek PM Kostas Karamanlis, Austrian chancellor Wolfgang Schuessel, French PM Dominique de Villepin, Italian PM Silvio Berlusconi, Dutch PM Jan Peter Balkenende, Luxemburgs PM Jean Claude Juncker as well as the leaders of Latvia, Malta, Slovakia and Slovenia were among the recipients of Merkels letter.

    Copies of the letter were also sent to the British PM Tony Blair and to the President of the European Commission Jos&#233; Manuel Barroso.

    "Should the course of the negotiations prove that standards set by the EU for Turkeys accession are not met, we will be left with no realistic alternatives," Mr Merkel noted in her letter.

    The German Opposition leader clearly favours "a close linkage of Turkey to the European Union."

    Turkey is Optimistic

    Turkish Economy Minister Ali Babacan said that Turkey hopes that the accession talks will commence on October 3 as planned, despite the fact that objections to its accession multiple within the EU.

    "There is only a slight possibility for a final decision to be made on September 1 and 2. What we want, though, is that the document on the negotiation framework be signed prior to October 3," he added.

    Mr Babacan also repeated that only after an overall settlement of the Cyprus issue, will Ankara accept the internationally recognised Greek-Cypriot government.

    When questioned to comment on the statement made by the French PM earlier this month claiming that Ankara should recognise Cyprus before the accession talks commence, Mr Babacan replied it is important that the domestic affairs within the EU Member-States be understood.

    Turkish Economy Minister added that Turkey counts on Germanys support, irrespective of the fact that the Christian Democratic Union, which is expected to win next months parliamentarian elections, strongly opposes Turkeys full EU membership.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [07] Visit of Finnish Trade Minister in Athens Euro-Med Meeting over Industry

    26 Aug 2005 19:44:00

    By Tina Valaoura

    The organization of the Euromediterranean Conference of the 25 EU countries and 10 Mediterranean over Industry was at the focus of the meetings between Finnish Trade Minister Mauri Pekkarinen and Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis and Development Minister Dimitris Sioufas. Finland, which will take up the EU Presidency on the second semester of the coming year, has given this important event, which will take place on September 2006, in Rhodes, over to Greece.

    Issues of developing the cooperation between Greece and Finland were also discussed in the meetings.

    The Finnish Minister stated that Greece has made very important efforts and has very high developmental rates. He also made reference to the field of possible cooperation between the two countries. "Trading between the two countries is imbalanced. There are many new opportunities for our businesses. Together with my counterpart we are trying to create immediate business contacts. I believe we have many opportunities in the future," stated the Finnish Minister.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [08] Oil Price Over $67 A Barrel Pessimism Over Oil Record Prices

    26 Aug 2005 11:33:00

    By Vagelis Theodorou

    Analysts expect a "sizzling" winter, since the rally of oil prices continues at the time when the high demand season is ending. Besides the slight drop of prices, black gold continues to be sold over $67 a barrel. In particular, in New York it neared $67.26, while in Singapore it is 30 cents lower. The reasons for the small decrease is that Hurricane Katrina, which struck the Mexico Gulf, did not affect oil production, while the crisis in Ecuador is gradually deescalating, and which arose from employees strikes in oil refineries and halted exports. However, analysts cannot foresee when the upward spiral of black gold will end, and which has been steady above $66 a barrel, while the time contacts for March 2006 are signed for prices above $70 a barrel. Prime Minister and Minister of Development Dimitris Sioufas also referred to the oil rally from the ND Central Committee meeting.

    Effort to Restrict Oil Dependency

    The Prime Minister made reference to the negative climate created by oil prices. Mr Karamanlis stated that the price of black gold has doubled, overthrowing the balance and increasing inflationary pressures.

    "The problem concerns Greece due to the great oil dependency, which is double than the European average," underlined the PM, and noted that the government is intensifying its efforts for the consequences to be countered in economy, inflation and citizens, and to develop actions for the gradual restriction of Greeces oil dependency.

    On his part, the Minister of Development referred to the emphasis given by the government for the development of green energy, as a way to restrict oil dependency. Among others, Mr Sioufas referred to the reinforcement of business initiatives for photovoltaic systems, offshore wind power and hydroelectric works, the bill for the implementation of biofuel, which will be ready in September, and the bill for renewable energy resources.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related News:

    Oil Hits New Record High

    [09] Papandreou Lashes Out "PASOK has A Programme"

    26 Aug 2005 16:57:00

    By Despina Hristopoulou

    During the second day of the partys Political Council, President of PASOK George Papandreou lashed out a new attack against the government, accusing ND of "being powerless against Greeces great problems, such as price rises, and unemployment" and "giving birth to new problems, such as a new poverty in Greece." Mr Papandreou stated, "PASOK has a programme" and announced, "We will unfold our alternative proposals in corresponding issues in the distance we run for the Greek people." Moreover, the President of PASOK noted, "We are beginning a new phase, a new course to the Greek people, a victorious course" and made public of his intention to tour Greece with his partys members.

    "No One Way Street"

    George Papandreou accused the government of "systemically undermining the unity of Hellenism, undermining democratic institutions, with coups in the Parliament, with the undermine of Justice, openly making the state one of partisanship, with the lack of meritocracy."

    He also noted that ND "reduces the prestige of our country internationally with its choices and the lack of policies and initiatives" and "speaks of haphazard choices for the few."

    He also referred to the Prime Minister, saying, "What Mr Karamanlis says is untrue; there is no one way street except for NDs policy" and concluded "the truth is that there are many alternative choices and we will indicate them. These choices combine our values, such as the Greece of production, growth, consensus, solidarity and social Justice, the Greece of Education, Culture, of dialogue and democracy."

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    Related News:

    Head-on Attack

    [10] "Government Supports PPC Chairman"

    26 Aug 2005 15:49:00

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    "The PPC Chairman enjoys the governments full trust," said on Friday Development Minister Dimitris Sioufas in response to PASOK parliamentarian responsible for the development sector Anna Diamantopoulou. Mrs Diamantapoulou had demanded PPC Chairman Ioannis Palaiokrassas be resigned due to his disagreement over the selection of one of the five general managers of the corporation, who were elected on Thursday by the Board of Directors, as well as due to his absence from the Boards meeting. Mrs Diamantopoulou claimed that Mr Palaiokrassas conflict with the Board of Directors sparked a heated situation, accused the government "Of covering everyone in a schizophrenic political fashion," and she wondered, "What gives Mr Palaiokrassas that power?"

    Mr Palaiokrassas abstained from the meeting of PPC Board of Directors, since he had requested the meeting be postponed due to his disagreement. The rest ten members of the Board disagreed and the five new general managers of five-year term were elected in the Chairmans absence.

    PPCs new general managers are:

    -General Manager of Mines: K. Melas -General Manager of Generation: A. Mizan -General Manager of Transmission: D. Bousdekis -General Manager of Distribution: D. Lathouris

    Grigoris Anastasiadis remains to his post as Chief Financial Officer.

    Translated by Areti Christou

    [11] Soy Sauce Recalled

    26 Aug 2005 14:47:00

    By Tina Valaoura

    The Central Food Control Agency (EFET) announced the recall of soy sauce "light superior soy sauce" of Cardinal S.A., which presented organoleptic characteristics.

    The larger part of the dangerous batch of the product, which is not available in supermarkets, is in the companys warehouses and was not distributed. The small quantity distributed was in restaurants, which has also been recalled.

    The product, which is manufactured in China, LOT number 5325 and expiry date 31.03.2008, was recalled from the company after checks on its safety, during which it emerged that the product smelled and tasted foul.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

    [12] For One Year Extension for Traffic Ring Permits

    26 Aug 2005 14:14:00

    By Mary Lou Tzempelikou

    Sources: ANA

    The present traffic ring permits, which were issued in 2004-2005, are extended for one year, and will expire on July 21, 2006. The traffic ring will start being enforced starting from Monday, August 29, on Monday-Thursday from 07:00-20:00 and Friday 07:00-15:00, while it will not be enforced on Saturday and Sunday. Special entrance-exit zones are foreseen for permanent residents within the traffic ring. The new applications will be submitted from Monday (08:00-14:00) in the Attica Traffic Police Directorate (Diligianni 24-26, 5th floor) while the submission deadline is 30.11.2005. For more information the interested persons should contact the following phone numbers: +0030 210-5222929, 210-5284203, 210-5284204 and fax +0030 2105284013.

    Translated by Eirene Nisiriou

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