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AHEPA Convention in Athens

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)  The 86th annual American Hellenic Educational & Progressive Association‘s (AHEPA) supreme convention commenced in Athens yesterday.The Greek capital is hosting the largest and oldest Greek-American organisation’s main event, for the first time after 38 years. The AHEPA members from Australiasia, Canada, Greece and Cyprus are attending the event in Athens from July 1 to 12 and in Cyprus from July 13 to 15. Addressing the opening ceremony, Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis congratulated the Organisation for its valuable contribution to the Greek culture, adding that AHEPA members are genuine ambassadors of the Greek spirit abroad. On his part, the Minister of Economy and Finance George Alogoskoufis highlighted the business opportunities emerging in Greece, focusing on the foreign investments.  AHEPA is the largest and oldest American-based, Greek heritage grassroots membership organization.  It was founded in the United States of America in 1922. Convention Programme; Secretariat General of Information: Links Library-Greek Diaspora & About Greece, Greeks Abroad 

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Greek OTE: A Strategic Deal with DeutscheTelekom

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)    The Greek government officially announced on Wednesday the sale of 3.0% of its holding in Hellenic Telecommunications Organisation (OTE) to Deutsche Telekom while the management of the company will be shared. The German group agreed to pay €29.75 per share, for a total of  €442.3 million.  Finance Minister George Alogoskoufis said the Greek state and Deutsche Telekom would each control 25% plus one share of OTE, while the German company could raise its holding, and each side would control five seats on OTE’s 10-member board. Alogoskoufis emphasised that a partnership with Europe’s largest telecoms organization would strengthen OTE, both financially and technologically, and therefore the country’s telecommunications sector would benefit. The agreement has faced strong opposition form labour unions and opposition parties. The deal has to be approved by Parliament in order to come into effect.  Continue reading

The Greek Economy

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)   According to the latest reports on the Greek economy published by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for 2007 (30.4.2008) and European Commission’s spring forecast, 2008-2009  (28.4.2008), predictions are temperately optimistic, despite a difficult and stressful world economic environment. In particular, for 2008, the IMF estimates that economic growth will reach 3.7%, as opposed to the Greek Central Bank’s 3.5% and to European Commission’s 3.4%. Even so, the Commission points out that a 3.4%’s growth rate is double that of the eurozone average. Furthermore, the Commission says that the deficit will be close to 2% for 2008 and 2009, while the public debt is estimated to decrease to 92.4% for 2008 and even further to 90.2% in 2009. Inflation will rise to 3.7% for 2008 as opposed to 3% of the previous year and to 3.6% in 2009. The IMF encourages Greece’s planning for balancing the books by 2010 and insists on neater tax administration and collection, as well as restrained public spending.     Continue reading

European Council in Brussels, March 13 / 14th 2008

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)  The spring European Council concluded its proceedings in Brussels, Friday 14th, where Greece was represented by Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis, Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis, Minister of Economy and Finance George Alogoskoufis, Minister of State and Government Spokesman Theodoros Roussopoulos, and Deputy Foreign Minister Yannis Valinakis. Continue reading

Invest in Greece: A Leading SE Country

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)  Greece’s high growth rates along with its economic role and presence in the broader Southeastern Europe region are two of the country’s main comparative advantages that render it an attractive destination for foreign investment, Finance Minister George Alogoskoufis said yesterday. Addressing an event for the relaunching of the Hellenic Center for Investment (ELKE) as the Invest in Greece Agency (www.investingreece.gov.gr), the minister noted that Greece has consistently achieved annual growth rates of around 4% in recent years and is well placed to withstand the upheavals in the global economic system, having significantly reduced its fiscal deficits. He predicted that Southeastern Europe will constitute the economic “miracle” of the next 15 years, due to high growth rates and investment opportunities. Alogoskoufis said new incentives had helped Greece attract more than €8.5 billion in foreign investment in the last two years. Continue reading

The “MADE IN GRECE” on the World

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA) The government’s export policy is now entering a new phase that builds on the positive results of the past four years and will offer greater possibilities to the country’s exporters, Economy and Finance Minister George Alogoskoufis said at a presentation of the master plan of the Hellenic Foreign Trade Board (HEPO) for 2008 (February 9). “With the great efforts made by Greek companies, taking advantage of changes in the government’s export policy, we have managed to turn a new page in the country’s export performance,” “Capitalising on the experience gained to date, we are… formulating new priorities… and opening new horizons for our exporters…” Alogoskoufis stated. Continue reading

GREEK ECONOMY IN THE WORLD

» 2008: A Crucial Year

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA) According to Economy and Finance Minister George Alogoskoufis the government needs to push ahead with reforms this year: “Whatever does not take place now will not happen by the end of the government’s four-year term,” the minister said to Kathimerini daily. In regard to forthcoming negotiations between employers and trade unions on pay hikes over the next two years Alogoskoufis expressed his preference the agreement to cover three years so that “there is a stable midterm framework.” Continue reading