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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 10-11-11
From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <www.ert.gr/>
 G. Papandreou: "Committed to Change Greece"Thursday, 11 November 2010 09:46
"In a few months we turned around the negative global image of a country in free fall. Greece is changing rapidly and there is nothing that can stop us. We will not allow the problems to perpetuate. We are looking them straight in the eye and assuming the responsibility to solve them. There are no miracles but we have the willingness ", stressed Prime-minister George Papandreou in his address at "NEWS XCHANGE 2010" forum organized by international media under the auspices of EBU and state channel ERT.
"It is our Commitment to Change"
" Tell the whole story about what is happening in Greece", was the Prime-minister's message.
In the past few months, information media inflated the existing problems, while several of them engaged in unfair criticism of the Greek people, thus contributing to the creation of negative stereotypes, Mr. Papandreou said.
"Your job is to be objective, and my job is to be honest with you," the Greek premier said after reviewing the steps taken by his government, stressing that in October 2009 general elections the Greek people had voted for change".
"Our citizens say that we can make the changes in the country, and this gives new impetus to the government", Papandreou continued in reply to questions, reassuring that "it is our commitment to change".
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The Greek Premier also reiterated that the structural changes, which should have been made years ago, will continue, adding that November, 7, 2010 local administration elections had indicated that Greek society has realized the necessity of those reforms in order for the country to survive.
"We will not allow the problems to perpetuate but we are looking straight at them and assuming the responsibility to solve them. Eurostat upward revision of the deficit does not change the targets of the Greek government to reduce the deficit by 5.5 % this year", the premier stressed.
" The government from the very beginning faced three major problems, namely the economy - which turned out to be worse than expected, especially the size of the deficit - lack of competitiveness and credibility" said Mr. Papandreou.
Asked about the crisis in the eurozone and the problems faced by other countries, Mr. Papandreou said that Europe has not realized how powerful it could be, stressing that we should make the markets- which are very useful tools- to work for the societies.
"Greece has problems but it is not responsible for the global economic crisis. It appears today that we have forgotten the outbreak of the crisis in 2008 with the toxic bonds", Mr. Papandreou concluded.
Sources: ΑNA-ΜPA, ΝΕΤ, ΝΕΤ 105.8
News item: 46728
 Racing for RevenuesThursday, 11 November 2010 15:56
The government is highly concerned as it has failed to collect the necessary revenues and is holding a number of meetings centered on ways to cover the 12 billion shortfall till the end of the year. It has, however, ruled out additional cuts in pensions and salaries. Unrest also prevails in 10-year bonds' market as spreads is moving upwards. In the meantime, Citigroup suggest purchase of 2-year state bonds.
The economic staff is racing to cover revenue shortfalls while troika members continue inspections on the implementation of memorandum terms in order to draw their report on Greece's economy progress prior to submission of state budget to the Parliament next Thursday.
There is a 2.5 billion euros shortfall in January-October 10-month period revenues. There is a 30% reduction in state deficit compared against last year but there is still a 7% left from the target set by the economic staff.
"Fiscal adjustment so far guarantees that we will exit from the crisis provided we adhere to the targets set from now on", said government spokesman George Petalotis.
The economic staff still expects to raise revenues from :
700 million from closure of taxation cases
1 billion euros from road taxes
1 billion euros from large property tax.
The government spokesman also belied scenarios about lay offs of civil servants.
Prime-minister George Papandreou had a meeting with Ministers for Finance and Justice, George Papakonstantinou and Haris Kastanidis centered on draft-bill on acceleration of big taxation cases trials.
Main opposition ND party stressed the need for a mixed economic policy.
LAOS President George Karatzaferis supports renegotiation of memorandum terms.
High ranking European Central Bank official Jurgen Stark made positive comments about Greece maintaining that Greece was implementing the stability program and would overcome the financial crisis.
In the meantime, Bloomberg news agency reports that Citigroup American bank suggests investors to buy 2-year Greek state bonds as it sees debt restructuring unlikely till the maturity of the these bonds. Spreads of Greek state bonds today rose to 950 base points.
Today the National Bank of Greece after successful recapitalization, raising 1.8 billion euros, picked six investment banks as advisers and underwriters to help sell up to 20 % of Turkish subsidiary Finansbank. Greek National Bank picked Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank, Morgan Stanley, Merrill Lynch, Goldman Sachs and HSBC. The first three will be global coordinators for the share placement.
After the sale NBG will hold at least 75% of Finansbank shares.
Sources: ΝΕΤ - ΝΕΤ 105.8 - ΑNA/ΜPA
News item: 46847
 Unemployment Rose to 12.2%Thursday, 11 November 2010 14:55
Unemployment rate rose to 12.2% in August compared against 12% in July and 9% in August, 2009. Hellenic Statistics Agency says that in a year 160.000 people have been added to the unemployment list which now numbers 613.000. Worst hit by unemployment is the region of Northern Greece and young people up to 29yo.
Unemployment Rate Worst Hit Macedonia-Youth-Women
Unemployment rate rose to 12.2% in August, despite peak tourist month, and number of unemployed to 613.108.
In August, 2010 unemployment rate rose 35,4% or 160.402 compared to 9% unemployment rate in August, 2009 while compared with 12% in July, 2010 some 6.073 (1%) were added in the unemployed list.
Unemployment rate in August hit highest record since January, 2007 when unemployment rate started being recorded at a monthly base. Unemployment rate was at 11.8% in the second quarter, in 2010 while new state budget prediction for yearly 11.6% unemployment rate is unachievable. According to draft budget, unemployment will stand at 14.5% in 2011, 15% in 2012 and 14.6% in 2013 as result of recession.
Young age groups are worst hit by unemployment: 15-24 years old unemployment rate is 30,8% (24,2% in August, 2009), 25- 34 years old is 16,4% (11,8% in August 2009). Unemployment has also hit women with unemployment rate rising to 15,5% from 11,6% in August, 2009), while for men has risen to 9,9% from 7,2% in August, 2009.
The regions that suffered the highest unemployment rate in August are: West Macedonia 13,9% from 9,4% in August, 2009, East Macedonia - Thrace 13,5% from 12,1%, Central Macedonia 13,5% from 10,4%, Thessaly 13,1% from 8,5%), Attica 12,9% from 9,5% and Sterea Hellas 12,6% from 10,9% in August, 2009.
Only three regions have an one digit unemployment rate in August due to the tourist season. These regions are: Ionian Islands 5.6% from 3.8% in August, 2009, South Aegean 5,9% from 6,3%, and North Aegean 6,9% from 7,8% in August, 2009. On the island of Crete where tourism dropped unemployment rose by 5%, namely rose to 11,2% from6,3% in August, 2009.
SYRIZA announcement says: "The government and Troika with their barbarian practices poor oil in the fire of unemployment", and asked for measures for the halting of lay offs and survival of the unemployed.
Sources: ΝΕΤ - ΝΕΤ 105.8 - ΑNA/ΜPA
News item: 46843