|Thursday, 21 February 2019|
The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 08-11-14
From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <www.ert.gr/>
 Papoulias' Message to Banks-ATE Bank Announces MeasuresPresident of Republic Karolos Papoulias on Friday received Bank of Greece (BoG) Gov. George Provopoulos, following an invitation by the former. In greeting Provopoulos and in reference to the timely international credit crisis, Papoulias emphasised that banks must exercise their social sensitivity, citing the G-20 meeting in Washington. What must be stressed is that banks continue adopting a hard stance-despite the pressures-most of which do not provide building loans and refuse to drop interest rates in order to relief markets. However, the Agricultural Bank of Greece (ATE) announced drop of interest rates, suspension of auctions and freezing of loan installments for a year.
More specifically, the Agricultural Bank of Greece:
Drops interest rates up to 0,50%
Reduces rates in credit cards up to 1%
Freezes building and consumer credits for a year and extends repayment of loans for two years to unemployed citizens supported by state allowances.
Will not proceed to property auctions against loan borrowers and against farmers that owe less than â¬ 100.000
Provide to the beneficiaries of interest subsidies, the building loan "Stegi OEK" with the best market conditions. Credit card holders and consumer credits borrowers can proceed to special arrangements with the bank (programme of refinancing of debts with 8,25% interest).
Implies a special proframme for the support of middle sized business in order to boost liquidity in markets complying with the direction given by the Ministry of Development.
On the Agricultural Sector
Reduces floating rate regarding building loans farmers receive up to 0,50%.
Freezes installments of loans for one year for 43.000 farmers.
News item: 15553
 Eurozone in Recession-Meeting of G20World leaders headed to Washington on Friday to seek ways to tackle a global economic crisis that has plunged much of Europe into its first recession since the euro currency was formed. The worst financial crisis in 80 years has weakened the world's major economies and official data showed the 15-nation euro zone economy had shrunk by 0.2 percent for the second quarter in a row.
France escaped, reporting growth of 0.1 percent in the third quarter but analysts said it was a semantic debate.With recession threatening the Russian economy and oil prices dropping 60%, Russian president Medvedev announced that he supports the allies of 300 million citizens and of the 27 leaders of the European Union who demand form the Summit meeting in Washington reforms to be taken on the financial system.
Today, after the completion of the EU-Russia Summit meeting in Nice, the French president said that the Russian proposals on the financial crisis are approaching the European ones while the Russian president stressed that Moscow considers necessary more summit meetings to be held for the tackling of the problem.
European Commission President Jose Manual Barroso said he hoped to draw more emerging economies into global financial institutions such as the International Monetary Fund, saying Europeans were ready to lower their representation to make more room for countries such as China.
"There is an openness to accommodate an increased role of the emerging economies," the International Herald Tribune quoted Barroso as saying.
News item: 15549
 Assurances at PM's Question TimePrime Minister Kostas Karamanlis stated during the PM's question time at Parliament today that the state will fully secure the Social Security Funds and all pensions, adding that there is no reason for concern. His statements came as a reply to the KKE (Communist Party of Greece) Secretary General Aleka Papariga's question. From her side, Ms Papariga described the PM's commitment vague, adding that the money of the insured should not be gambled at the Stock Market.
"The Greek state guarantees the property of the Social Security Funds. Pensions are fully guaranteed for all Greeks. No pensioner or insured should be concerned."
Mr Karamanlis also assured all that the losses of the Social Security Funds that had invested in the Stock Market would be covered.
He also stressed that Social Security Funds are armoured and have no reason to liquidize or sell their property, underlining that the state would fully guarantee all pensions.
Ms Papariga asked from the government to purchase the shares the Social Security Funds have in their possession not on their current price but on the market price. Furthermore, she stated that the KKE disagrees with the Social Security Funds' investing their reserves in the Stock Market.
Reply to A. Alavanos on Armaments
The PM also answered to Alekos Alavanos' question regarding his proposal to reduce armaments expenditures. The SYRIZA (Coalition of the Radical Left) Parliamentary Group head stated that the money spent on expenditures could be instead spent on the poor.
The prime minister pointed out that for the first time defence expences will be less in the 2009 budget. The debate extended to the financial crisis, with the PM attacking PASOK as the public debt increased when it ruled in the past.
News item: 15542