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Golden U20 Greeks

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   The Greek Under-20 basketball team won the European Championship yesterday (July 26) by defeating France 90-85.  After an amazing final, the Greek team triumphed and captured the gold medal in the 2009 U20 European Championship, which took place on the island of Rhodes, from July 16 until July 26.  Seven players including all five starters scored in double figures led by tournament Most Valuable Player (MVP) Kostas Papanikolaou.  Thus, the golden generation added Greece’s first ever U-20 gold medal to U-18 gold in 2008 and the silver from this month’s U19 FIBA World Championship. “This is a special moment. Another gold and first in Europe. Every medal is special and this is special because we are at home in Rhodes with our friends and family,” said Pappas, member of both the U20 and the U19 All-Tournament Team in New-Zealand. Greek News Agenda: Greece Wins Euro U-18

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Greek Business Matters

♦ 2009 Budget Progress

euro_money23(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   Following the end of the first semester of 2009, the government, true has re-evaluated the consequences of the global crisis on Greek economy and the national budget, as well as the predictions concerning growth prospects in 2009.  After evaluating the data, it emerges that certain sectors of the economy, mainly private consumption and exports, will experience a downturn worse than predicted in the updated Growth and Stability programme. However, Economy and Finance Minister Yannis Papathanssiou believes the Greek economy will enter a recovery phase towards the end of the year, and will definitely record positive growth rates in 2010, as he stated during a recent press conference (25.6.2009).  Ministry of Economy and Finance: Tables on the 2009 Budget Progress

HEPO: New Website 

The Hellenic Foreign Trade Board (HEPO) is officially responsible for implementing the export policy of Greece. The organization focuses primarily on designing and coordinating activities for firms to expand their business into foreign markets, promoting best-practices in line with the national export policy, as well as encouraging and assisting SMEs in entering international markets. With the goal of reinforcing the efforts of Greek companies to expand their activities to foreign markets, HEPO implements a further innovative and ambitious initiative, titled “Greek building materials,” & “Greek building services.”  The initiative is incorporated into the framework of the country’s broad exporting policy set by the Ministry of Economy and Finance and concerns the overall promotion of the sectors of construction, building materials, equipment, and related services. For information, visit HEPO’s new website

Olympus Marathon 2009

olympusmarathon2(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)  Olympus Marathon, a unique trail running event held annually on Mount Olympus, took place on June 29. Participants gathered at the remains of the sacred city of Dion, at sunrise and followed the route itself which revives the pilgrimage that the ancient Greeks made to Mt Olympus in early summer – in June – to honour and to sacrifice to Zeus -the chief deity of the Greek pantheon. Starting from a sea-level altitude, athletes followed 44km of trails and reached the height of 2780m retracing history and myth. The winner of the Olympus Marathon 2009 is Spain’s Hernandez Gispert.

Athens Cultural Summer 2009

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   The City of Athens, via its Cultural Organisation, invites one and all to join a major celebration this summer featuring 586 events that will take place in squares, open spaces and theatres around the city.  The events harmoniously combine traditions and contemporary ideas and offer something for everyone, including residents, children and visitors to Athens. The basic components of the “Cultural Summer 2009” programme are European Music Day featuring 27 events, the ‘Culture for All’ programme with 430 events, the Athens Festival with 118 events and the 7th Athens International Dance Festival with 12 performances.

European Parliament Elections 2009

» JUNE 4-7: EUROPEANS VOTE
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(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)  In Greece, the European Parliament elections will take place on June 7.  In the member-states of the EU, where Greek citizens reside permanently or happen to be during the election period, the election will take place on June 6.  The Greek diplomatic authorities in those member-states must provide information regarding the precise election day, Greek citizens’ voting rights, as well as the electoral procedure to be followed. For the EU Election, the Greek Territory constitutes a united electoral region (22 seats).  In the other member-states, the elections will take place from June 4 to 7. The elections will be carried out with general, direct, secret voting, as stipulated.

» WHY VOTE
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By voting in the European elections, the citizens choose who influences the future and the daily life of close to 500 million fellow Europeans.  The citizens’ participation in the decision-making process, at both local and European level, is set as a permanent and constant priority by the European Union.   Fully adopting the principles of equality and not discrimination, the Greek Ministry of Interior invites all EU citizens residing in Greece to exercise their right of vote.  European Parliament: Why Vote 

 
» DISTRIBUTION OF SEATS
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The members of the European Parliament are elected under a pure proportional electoral system.Voting results from all over the country are processed and published by the Supreme Election Committee of the Ministry of Interior.  This Committee sets the final electoral vote chart and distributes the seats of the European Parliament to all the political groups, after incorporating the vote of Greek citizens residing in other EU member states into the general voting results achieved in the Greek State.

» THE RIGHT TO CANDIDACY
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Greek citizens who have reached the age of 25 on the day of the election and have the ability to vote have the right to be elected to the European Parliament.  Every person who falls under the provisions of the article 56 § 1 and 4 of the Greek Constitution or is a member of the Greek Parliament is barred from the right to be nominated for candidacy.
  
» ELECTORAL BODY
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According to the Ministry of Interior, 9,866,913 Greek citizens reside in Greece and have the right to vote on the June 7, while 110,562 young people will vote for the first time.  The Greek citizens who reside in other EU member states and have the right to vote on the June 6 total 36,758, according to the number of petitions filed at the Greek Consulates. The number of European citizens who reside in Greece and will vote in June amounts to 6,530.  For further information click here.

 
» ELECTION CAMPAIGN
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The election campaign begins at least 30 days before the election date.  Political parties represented in the Greek Parliament or in the European Parliament and parties which obtained more than 1.5% of the national vote in the last parliamentary elections receive funding. Media access: All parties represented in the Greek Parliament or the European Parliament have proportional access to state-owned media. During the election campaign, opinion polls will be conducted and published until June 5. After that date, no transmission of political advertising messages and broadcasted pre-election dialogue is allowed.

» FACILITATING CITIZENS & THE MEDIA _________________________________________

As of May 15, the Ministry of Interior has launched an advertising campaign to be completed one day before the elections date i.e. June 6, 2009.   The campaign’s slogan is “Vote in Euroelections. Defy indifference.” According to the Minister of the Interior, Prokopis Pavlopoulos, the main objective of this slogan is to inform citizens and encourage them to participate in the voting procedure.   Information on where to cast ballots can be easily acquired by calling the 4-digit number 1500, or visiting the ministry’s website at www.ypes.gr, or the public administration’s national portal: www.ermis.gov.gr/portal/page/portal/ermis/    A special television spot for Greek citizens and Hellenic media abroad, as well as the diaspora, is now posted on the websites of Greece’s communication & Press Offices in the rest of EU member states.   Furthermore, the Secretariat General of Information-Communication will set up a special EU Elections Press Centre at Zappeion Hall, in order to facilitate journalists and media covering the event. 
 
 
» EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT ELECTIONS 2004 _____________________________________________
 

Previous European Parliament elections took place on June 13, 2004.  For more information about 2004 Euro-elections’ results, visit the website of Interior Ministry or the website of the European Parliament or the website of the Press and Communication Office in Paris http://www.amb-grece.fr/grece/europeennes.htm .

» PARTIES PARTICIPATING
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 1. New Democracy   2. Panhellinic Socialist Movement     3. Greek Communist party   4. Coalition of the Radical left   5. Popular Orthodox Rally    6. Party of the Liberals   7. Fighting Socialist Party of Greece  8. Dimosthenis Vergis- Greek Ecologists   9. Working revolutionary party    10. Liberal alliance    11. Union of Centrists  12. Popular Nationalist Movement-Chrysi Avgi  13. Panhellenic Macedonian Front  14. Society 15. Popular Unions of Bipartisan Social Groups  16. M-L Greek Communist Party 17. European Alliance – Rainbow   18. Party of Greek Hunters    19. Left anticapitalist cooperation  20. Patriotic Humanitarian Movement  21. Youth Party    22. Green Ecologists  23. Action  24. OAKKE – Organisation for the Reconstruction of Communist Party of Greece  25. Greek Ecologists  26. Greek Unit   27. Greek Movement of Direct Democracy

425 “Blue Flags” for Greece

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   The Hellenic Society for the Protection of Nature -coordinator of the international “Blue Flag” programme in Greece- announced yesterday (May 27) the awarded beaches and marinas for 2009.  Greece was awarded flags for 425 beaches and 8 marinas by the international non-profit Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE), conquering the second place among 39 countries worldwide.  The Blue Flag is an internationally recognised standard for quality, rewarding sustainable development at beaches and marinas, relying on strict criteria dealing with water quality, environmental education and information, environmental management, and safety.  Greek News Agenda: Blue Flags; Hellenic Society for the Protection of Nature: Greek Beaches and Marinas awarded the Blue Flag for 2009

Greek PM at the EPP Congress

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis addressed the European Peoples’ Party (EPP) conference, ahead of the June Elections at the European Parliament, in Warsaw on Wednesday, stressing the need for shielding the European social model and maintaining the balance between the market and social responsibility. The conference was attended by most premiers of the European Union member-states, as well as a considerable number of party leaders, both from member-states and EU accession candidate countries. Referring to the crucial economic situation, Karamanlis underlined that the key word is “confidence” and that the EPP has always placed emphasis on the social dimension in safeguarding economic cohesion and social solidarity.