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Greek Tourism Shows Resilence

• Minister Is Optimistic

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA) Figures on arrivals at Greek airports during the first five months of the year show an annual drop by 8.8%, much less than had originally been anticipated, Tourism Minister Kostas Markopoulos said during a press conference on June 16. Despite the dire economic climate globally, Markoupolos appeared optimistic that the drop in tourism for 2009 will not reach double digits and stressed that domestic tourism will also reach high levels. Kathimerini daily (17.6.2009): Tourism will not fall by over 10pct this year, gov’t says. Greek National Tourism Organisation: www.visitgreece.gr

• New Planes Take Off

Marfin Investment Group (MIG) which recently bought Olympic Airlines (OA) announced yesterday (June 17) that its subsidiary Olympic Air bought eight Q400 aircrafts from Bombardier for € 161,5 million with an option to acquire another 8. Meanwhile Aegean Airlines has announced that it is beginning daily flights to Istanbul from September 9, expanding its international routes. Kathimerini daily: MIG buys planes for Olympic Air

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Olympic Airlines Seals the Deal

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)

The government has announced the successful conclusion of negotiations with Marfin Investment Group (MIG) for the sale of the national carrier Olympic Airlines (OA). Under the deal, clinched late on Friday, the state is set to receive the sum of €177.2 million for all OA assets, flight operations and technical maintenance. For the ground-handling division, since talks between MIG and Swissport are still in progress, negotiations have been extended for a week, Development Minister Kostas Hatzidakis announced.

In order for the agreement between the Greek state and the Marfin Investment Group (MIG) to be finalised, it must be approved by the European Commission, following which, the inter-ministerial privatisations committee must evaluate it.

Olympic Airlines: Last Boarding Call

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)  olympin-airlinesThe Greek government expects binding offers by investors interested in buying Olympic Airlines to be submitted by January 30, 2009. The privatisation procedure for the country’s national flag carrier is being continued with a total of 17 investors already participating in three tenders to sell Olympic Airlines, ground handling unit and aircraft maintenance services.  Olympic Airlines carried 6.2 million passengers in 2007 to 36 cities and islands in Greece and to 37 destinations in Europe, Asia, North America and Africa. Athens News Agency: Binding offers for OA by end Jan.  Secretariat General of Information: About Brand Greece-Privatisation Policy and the Greek Economy; Ministry of Economy & Finance: Privatisations Agenda Continue reading

EU Court Rules in Favor of Olympic Airlines

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA) The European Union’s first instance court on Wednesday ruled against a European Commission decision ordering the Greek state to recover aid allocated to state-run Olympic Airways by the government in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in the United States, a figure totalling 4.85 million euros. Athens News Agency: EU first instance court annuls Commission decision regarding nearly 5 mln euros in state aid to OA  Court of First Instance of the European Communities: Olympiaki Aeroporia Ypiresia v. Commission; Greek News Agenda: Flying the wings of change