|Friday, 24 January 2020|
Macedonian Press Agency: News in English, 00-12-17
From: The Macedonian Press Agency at http://www.mpa.gr and http://www.hri.org/MPA.
 PUBLIC TV STATIONS COOPERATE THROUGH BALKANETThessaloniki, 17 December 2000 (18:59 UTC+2)
A conference of public television stations in the Balkans concluded in Thessaloniki today, with the signing of a protocol calling for regional media cooperation through the establishment of the electronic network BalkaNet.
According to the protocol, BalkaNet will be established in Thessaloniki and will provide on-line linkage to the participating television networks as of January 10, 2001. The as-of-yet participating stations are Greece's state-owned ERT-3, which is based in Thessaloniki, and the public broadcasting stations of Albania, Bulgaria and FYROM.
The conference was also addressed by the Secretary General of the Association of Balkan News Agencies (ABNA) Spyros Kouzinopoulos, who is also the Macedonian Press Agency's general director.
Among the plethora of proposals tabled during the two-day event, ERT-3 suggested the formation of a link between BalkaNet and the ABNA's data bank, which would provide the BalkaNet members with photographs and news copy, while in turn the BalkaNet would provide ABNA with video coverage.
Also, the delegates discussed the creation of a Balkan electronic library which would be a BalkaNet website, for broadcasting purposes, while the protocol foresees the formation of a Balkan e-Radio, i.e. broadcasts via the Internet.
Another proposal concerned the creation of a television programming market in the Balkans, which will be held on a rotating basis each spring at a Balkan capital. This market would feature exhibitions, a video showcase, and special programming of Balkan stations. The delegates also proposed the programming of annual joint productions, such as "The Life and Works of Rigas Fereos" "The European Year of Languages" and the "Climate Changes and Policies for Environmental Protection from Gaseous Pollution".
During his address, Mr. Kouzinopoulos pointed out that the network's activities will assist the Balkan Journalists Training Center where the region's media officials will be provided with information and seminars on issues pertaining to European organizations.
According to Mr. Kouzinopoulos, this center will essentially materialize an idea submitted in 1998 by Albanian Foreign Minister Pascal Milo during the MPA's Fourth Conference themed after Rigas Velestinlis.
The delegates discussed inter-Balkan cooperation in the media sector, collaboration in the sectors of news, sports, technical facilitation, etc.
 GREECES STABILITY PACT TO BE TABLED TOMORROWAthens, 17 December 2000 (18:54 UTC+2)
Greece's five-year Stability Pact for the 2000-2004 period, a draft of which will be submitted to the European Commission tomorrow, forecasts an average growth rate of five percent and a decline in the inflation rate to two percent after 2001.
The pact, whose positive forecast reflects optimism over the country's imminent entry into the eurozone on January 1, 2001, also foresees a reduction in unemployment.
A central element of the pact are the resources expected from the European Union-subsidized Community Support Framework III investment program, estimated at more than 16 trillion drachmas, which is seen as the raw material for high growth rates. The program was approved recently and the government is hoping that disbursements will commence soon through the Cohesion Fund.
The EMU era is expected to be marked by a broad opening of markets, extensive privatizations and the introduction of new technologies.
 STATE ALLOCATES MONIES FOR NEW TECHNOLOGY USEAthens, 17 December 2000 (18:53 UTC+2)
In an effort to boost competitiveness and help to create new jobs, the government has earmarked cash to subsidies the use of new technology and innovation in business.
According to the development ministry, the state will provide 145.8 billion drachmas and the private sector 161 billion drachmas to fund the investment proposals. The sectors to be eligible for financial assistance are those concerning the creation of high-tech companies that aim to apply commercially the findings of research.
The ministry expects around 500 new firms to be set up leading to the creation of about 3,000 jobs. The funding is also destined for existing small, very small and medium sized enterprises that are seeking to improve their production methods. Investment proposals may be submitted from January 2001.
 GREEK-CANADIAN JOINT VENTURES IN ELECTRICITYAthens, 17 December 2000 (18:51 UTC+2)
Canadian firm Northland Power Inc. has announced plans to participate in a 2,000 MW-capacity joint venture production scheme in Greece, through collaboration with Greek industrial consumers and investors following deregulation of the country's energy sector.
According to a company press release, Northland's Venture Partnership Program selected Greece due to "the excellent opportunities emerging for the development of energy production units, as the country is entering a period of restructuring of its market, but also due to increasing demand."
The Canadian company intends to create a franchising scheme with Greek entrepreneurs, who would play a prominent role in setting the project up, whereas Northland Power would assume the overall responsibility and undertake the total cost for its development and implementation. Northland Power hopes to conclude its first Greek partnership early next year, to allow ample time for preparing for market deregulation.
Canada is the world's single largest electricity exporter.
 OTE WINS BULGARIAN TENDER FOR GSM CELL PHONESSofia, 17 December 2000 (18:49 UTC+2)
Greece's state-owned Hellenic Telecommunications Organization (OTE) has been awarded the Bulgarian tender for the sale of a GSM-technology mobile phone license.
With its bid at $135 million, OTE emerged ahead of Telecom Italia, while two other bidders for the 15-year license, Vodafone Bulgaria, in which Britain's Vodafone Group Plc holds 90 percent and United Bulgarian Bank and Dutch-registered Fintour Holdings BV - a Finnish-Turkish consortium of Sonera and Turkcell withdrew from the tender.
 GREECES COMMUNIST PARTY RE-ELECTS SECRETARYAthens, 17 December 2000 (18:48 UTC+2)
The Communist Party of Greece (KKE) ended its congress today with the election of a new central committee, which, in turn, unanimously re-elected Aleka Papariga as party leader.
Costas Maragoudakis was elected as chairman of the party's central financial controls committee.
 ΠΙΕΣΕΙΣ ΓΑΛΛΙΑΣ ΚΑΙ ΗΠΑ ΣΤΟΝ ΝΤΕΝΚΤΑΣ ΓΙΑ ΣΤΡΟΒΙΛΙΑΠαρίσι, 17 December 2000 (12:57 UTC+2)
Την αντίθεση της γαλλικής κυβέρνησης στα μέτρα που έλαβαν οι κατοχικές "αρχές" σε βάρος της UNFICYP από τον περασμένο Ιούνιο, εξέφρασε ο εκπρόσωπος του γαλλικού υπουργείου Εξωτερικών της Γαλλίας.
"Η Γαλλία εκφράζει τη λύπη της για μέτρα που έλαβε η τουρκοκυπριακή πλευρά τα οποία εμποδίζουν την κινητικότητα και τη δράση της UNFICYP στο βόρειο τμήμα της Κύπρου και περιπλέκουν την αποστολή του γενικού γραμματέα των Ηνωμένων Εθνών για την επίτευξη λύσης", δήλωσε ο εκπρόσωπος του υπουργείου, Francois Rivasseau.. Η Γαλλία, πρόσθεσε, εύχεται την επιστροφή στην προτεραία κατάσταση, κυρίως στα Στροβίλια.
Υπενθυμίζεται ότι και η αμερικανική κυβέρνηση δια του εκπροσώπου της στο Στέητ Ντιπάρτεμεντ, Ρίτσαρντ Μπάουτσερ, εξέφρασε την αντίθεση της σε οποιαδήποτε πρόσθετα μέτρα τα οποία θα παρεμποδίζουν το έργο της ειρηνευτικής δύναμης του ΟΗΕ στην Κύπρο (UNFICYP).
"Οι ΗΠΑ υποστηρίζουν ότι η παρουσία του ΟΗΕ στην περιοχή είναι πολύ σημαντική και η απόφαση του Συμβουλίου Ασφαλείας, που εγκρίθηκε ομόφωνα, καλεί την τουρκική πλευρά να αποσύρει τους περιορισμούς που έχει θέσει στην ειρηνευτική δύναμη από τον περασμένο Ιούνιο και να επαναφέρει στα Στροβίλια το προηγούμενο καθεστώς" δήλωσε ο κ. Μπάουτσερ.