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Greece, Qatar Promote Relations

(GREEK NEWS AGENDA)  The Hellenic Federation of Enterprises (SEV) and the Qatar Chamber of Commerce and Industry on Monday signed a cooperation protocol, during Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis’ visit to Qatar (26-27.10.2008) The agreement was signed in order to promote bilateral economic relations. The SEV and Qatar’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry announced plans to set up a Greece-Qatar Business Council. Signing of behalf of SEV, the federation’s vice-president Thanasis Lavidas referred to the difficult conditions created by the international financial crisis and said that business communities could provide the answer through a dynamic increase in investment and commercial activity in foreign markets. He called on Greek businesses to turn their attention to markets that were resisting the crisis and still growing rapidly, like those of Qatar. Ministry of Foreign Affairs: Bilateral Relations Greece-Qatar

Greek Banks Turn East

National Bank of Greece
(GREEK NEWS AGENDA) Latest developments in the banking sector point to major Greek Banks’ strategic ties with the Arab world. Greece’s largest Bank, the National Bank of Greece has declared its interest to expand its activities in the fast-growing Egyptian market, where it currently maintains one branch. Egypt’s third-largest bank, Banque du Caire, recently rejected a National Bank offer worth $2.025 billion. However, the Greek bidder remains firm in its decision to boost its presence in fast-growing Arab nation, while its CEO, Takis Arapoglou says that “the bank’s future lies abroad”.
Alpha Bank
Meanwhile, Greece’s third-largest bank, Alpha Bank announced the acquisition of the bank’s 4% of its treasury stock by Qatari investors. The Bank sold its 4% stake for €296 million to Paramount Services Holding Limited, a company of Qatari interests. Alpha Bank’s new shareholder is believed to leverage the bank’s establishment in the fast-growing Eastern Mediterranean region where the bank’s presence is limited yet promising.  Alpha Bank: Alpha Bank announces the sale of a 4% stake to Qatari private investors  Secretariat General of Information: About Brand Greece, Greek Banking Sector: Expanding into the South Eastern European region