|Thursday, 15 April 2021|
Athens News Agency: Daily News Bulletin in English, 16-08-23
From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>Tuesday, 23 August 2016 Issue No: 5233
 PM Tsipras holds meetings to discuss Mediterranean summit, TIFPrime Minister Alexis Tsipras held a series of meetings with government officials on Monday to prepare ahead of the summit of Europe?s Mediterranean countries and the Thessaloniki International Fair (TIF) in September.
Concerning the summit, which will be held on September 9, Greece will aim at forging a stronger alliance to influence the European agenda on issues such as defending the European social acquis, economic development and the refugee issue. The leaders of France, Portugal, Spain, Italy, Malta and Cyprus have all confirmed their attendance. In the coming days, the government wants to form a more specific framework on these issues to discuss at the summit, government sources said.
Concerning TIF, which is scheduled for September 10-11, Tsipras is expected to focus on two points - growth and society. He will present the government?s policies and its prospects which he will integrate in the long-term goal (by 2020) of economic recovery and the return to normality, specifically in terms of unemployment and the migration of young people.
He will also take stock of the government?s work by mentioning its commitments and the degree to which they were implemented.
 PM Tsipras in PES meeting on Thursday, as Hollande confirms attendance in Athens summitPrime Minister Alexis Tsipras will start a series of international contacts this week starting on Thursday (August 25), when he will participate in the summit of the Party of European Socialists (PES) in Paris.
On Monday, the French government confirmed that President Francois Hollande will attend a meeting of the European South in Athens at the start of September, initiated by Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras.
"A South Europe meeting will be held at the start of September, which was proposed by the Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and which Francois Hollande accepted," spokesman Stephane Le Foll said.
At the meeting, Tsipras will focus on issues related to Europe's social character and the goals for growth and lower unemployment, and will also open the debate on eurozone?s fiscal relaxation.
The Greek government has said the meeting will be held on September 9. On September 18, the premier will visit New York to participate in the United Nations' general assembly.
 PM Tsipras has a series of international contactsPrime Minister Alexis Tsipras will have a series of international contacts this week. On Thursday, August 25, will participate in the summit of the Party of European Socialists.
Meawhile, Athens is preparing to receive the leaders of the European South for the summit to be held in September 9 in Athens.
The prime minister will focus on issues related to Europe's social character and the goals for growth and lower unemployment as well as opening the debate on eurozone fiscal relaxation.
On September 18, Tsipras will visit New York to participate in the United Nations' general assembly.
 UNHCR chief on 3-day visit to Athens as of TuesdayThe UN high commissioner for refugees, Filippo Grandi, will start a three-day visit to Athens on Tuesday to assess the humanitarian needs of the refugees and migrants hosted in Greece and find ways to help the country tackle the issue.
Grandi will meet with President Prokopis Pavlopoulos, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, and members of the cabinet. He will also visit refugee centers in Attica and central Macedonia to meet with asylum seekers and representatives of local authorities, civil society and other partners involved in managing the refugee flows.
 New Democracy leader to visit Zakynthos on WednesdayNew Democracy leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis will be touring Zakynthos on Wednesday where he will meet the mayor, Pavlos Kolokotsas, and participate in a meeting of local business associations on tourism.
He will then visit the gulf of Laganas to see the nesting area of the loggerhead sea turtle (Caretta caretta).
 Pavlopoulos: Our obligation to remember the victims of Pontic Greeks genocide and Greeks of Asia MinorIt is our national obligation to remember the victims of the genocide of the Pontic Greeks and the Greeks of Asia Minor, Greek President Prokopis Pavlopoulos said on Monday adding that this is not for revenge, but for guiding the current grim reality of terrorism.
Pavlopoulos noted that Greece fully supports the constitutional legality in Turkey and constitutes a "bridge" of peace and friendship with the European Union.
"As Greeks, as members of the International Community and as equal partners of the European Union, we must not forget the sacrifice of the tragic victims of the Genocide of the Greeks of Pontus and Asia Minor Greeks, thus accomplishing a national obligation following the unanimous decisions of the Greek Parliament in 1994 and 1998 respectively," he said.
Pavlopoulos added:" This is not about revenge, since this feeling is totally unknown to us, the Greeks, and this is proved by the fact that we fully support the constitutional legitimacy to our friend and neighbor Turkey and we are a bridge of peace and friendship in the relations with the European Union and the West in general. The memory of these Genocides can become the driver in the current reality of terrorism - mainly jijadist- of committing crimes against humanity, that also plagues Turkey, in order to defend, at the same time, the future of mankind and the final consolidation of the European Union against ruthless enemies which aspire its dissolution and destruction."
 Main pensions will not be affected, Labour Min Katrougalos reassuresThe aim of the government during the negotiations is to prevent the widespread deregulation of the labour market, Labour Minister George Katrougalos on Monday said in an interview with public broadcaster ERT.
He underlined that the issue of mass layoffs is a red line adding that Greece needs new labour positions and not layoffs. Regarding pensions, he reassured that there will be no reductions. On the contrary, he said, some of them will be slightly increased.
 We can and must get out of this crisis stronger and united, Greek President stresses"We can and must get out of this crisis stronger and united. We owe it to history and to the new generation," Greek President Prokopis Pavlopoulos said on Monday.
Pavlopoulos also referred to the need to rediscover the EU principles and values.
"We can we show that we are not only the heirs of a great past, but we are the guarantors of a future that belongs to us because we owe it to ourselves, we owe it to mankind, we owe to the great European family, which we should inspire in order to find its way. Because Europe is also in crisis. We can and we must inspire our partners so that Europe finds in these difficult times its course, its values, its principles," Pavlopoulos stressed.
 EU alliances help Greece showcase its geostrategic role, Deputy FM Amanatidis says"We hope that Turkey will take all the right steps and will be able to overcome its problems," Deputy Foreign Minister Yiannis Amanatidis said to Praktorio 104.9 FM on Monday.
"We are monitoring carefully, calmly and soberly the developments and in any case the agreement [on the refugee crisis] should be supported by all the forces in order to be implemented by our neighbor, Turkey," he added.
Referring to eight Turkish officers, he said: "The case is in court. We are a state of law and the competent bodies will decide on this."
Regarding to the refugee flows, Amanatidis underlined that "there have been discussions with the neighboring country, Bulgaria, and in any case, what we are asking for is further support in terms of EU infrastructure, including the issue of refugees' relocation in EU member states."
Commenting on the government's initiative for the Summit of the South, he said that the creation of EU alliances helps our country to highlight its geostrategic role and its strategic advantages in attracting investments.
 Head of Russian Railways says there are 'no claims' on TRAINOSE tenderThe head of the Russian Railways (RZD) said there are no claims on behalf of the company concerning Greece?s organization and conduction of a tender to sell stakes at its national railway network TRAINOSE, its rolling stock operating company ROSCO and Thessaloniki Port.
In a letter to the country?s privatization agency (HRADF) and its chief, Stergios Pitsiorlas, Oleg Belozerov clarified statements made to Interfax news agency in July that RZD had not received enough information about TRAINOSE.
"I would like to emphasize the absence of any claims on behalf of JSC Russian Railways in regards to the organization and conduction of these tenders," the president of RZD said in his letter dated August 9.
"[I] would also like to note that the comment in an interview with ?Interfax? about the lack of information was given in the context of preparation of comprehensive assessment of TRAINOSE business by JSC Russian Railways, including the issues beyond the scope of responsibility of the Hellenic Republic Asset Development Fund."
Belozerov also added that HRADF?s transport privatization program will help develop the sector and the overall economy. The letter was published on HRADF?s website.
 Property tax to be posted online at end of August, says ministerGreeks will be alerted on the exact amount of property tax they will be called to pay towards the end of the month, Alternate Finance Minister Tryfon Alexiadis told SKAI TV channel on Monday.
Asked about delays in posting the tax - known as ENFIA - online, Alexiadis said: "This doomsaying and conspiracy theories that the tax announcement will be delayed defies all science fiction scenarios. They were going to be published on the 18th, but there?s an issue and they will be posted in the following days."
 Hotels on Rhodes fully booked in AugustHotels and rooms to let on the island of Rhodes are fully booked, up 6 percent compared to last year.
More specifically, 292 aircrafts landed at Rhodes and a total of 23,268 tourists visited the island.
The estimates for September are also positive.  Greek stocks end higher on Monday helped by banks
Greek stocks in the Athens Stock Exchange rebounded on Monday helped by the banking sector, after suffering losses on Friday. Turnover remained low but rose slightly compared to the thin trading volumes of last week.
The composite index of the market rose 0.84 percent to end at 566.01 points. Turnover totaled 21.346 million euros in a volume of 23,737,250 shares. The Large Cap index advanced 1.34 percent while the Mid Cap index closed 0.60 percent lower.
Alpha Bank (5.23 pct), Jumbo (3.68 pct) and Eurobank (2.33 pct) were top gainers among blue chip stocks, while Ellaktor (2.33 pct), Aegean Airlines (0.72 pct) and Mytilineos (0.52 pct) recorded the biggest percentage losses of the day.
Among market sectors, Banks (2.89 pct), Personal & Household products (2.38 pct) and Food & Beverages (1.28 pct) recorded gains, while Chemicals (0.65 pct), Raw Materials (0.52 pct) and Telecommunications (0.24 pct) suffered losses.
National Bank and Alpha Bank were the most heavily traded securities of the day. Broadly, decliners led advancers by 45 to 39 with another 19 issues unchanged. Forthnet (18.16 pct), AXON Holdings (14.29 pct) and Audiovisual (7.41 pct) were top gainers, while SATO (19.77 pct), G.E. Dimitriou (16.13 pct) and Aloumyl (11.27 pct) were top losers.
 ADEX closing reportThe September contract on the FTSE/ASE Large Cap index was trading at a marginal premium of 0.04 percent in the Athens Derivatives Exchange on Monday. The FTSE/ASE Large Cap index closed at 1,507.40 points, registering gains of 1.34 percent. Volume on the Large Cap index totaled 1,427 contracts with 5,195 open positions in the market.
Volume in futures contracts on equities totaled 21,718 contracts with investment interest focusing on National Bank?s contracts (12,268), followed by Alpha Bank (3,735), Piraeus Bank (3,170), Eurobank (1,228), MIG (529), OTE (192), PPC (90), OPAP (78), Mytilineos (66), METKA (46), Ellaktor (40), Motor Oil (35), Titan (30), GEK (14), and Hellenic Petroleum (5).
 Discover the eastern AegeanThe Hoteliers Associations of Lesvos, Chios, Samos, Kos and Leros are offering discounts of 50 percent in hotel prices as part of a coordinated action to boost tourism on the islands of the eastern Aegean.
The increase of domestic tourism in the eastern Aegean is a strategic goal of the Economy Ministry, which cooperates with public and private entities.
Responding to Alternate Tourism Minister Elena Kountoura?s proposal of cooperation to increase tourism demand in the coming months, the presidents of the Hoteliers Associations of Samos, Lesvos, Chios, Kos and Leros - Lipsi took immediately initiatives for the coordination and cooperation of the hotels in order to attract Greek visitors who go on holidays in September and October.
Apart from lower room rates, hotels offer attractive deals on accommodation packages.
This action is an initiative of Economy, Development and Tourism Ministry and the Greek National Tourism Organization, in cooperation with the General Secretariat of Information and Communication and the Athens-Macedonian News Agency, which will be responsible for its promotion in Greece and abroad, giving the opportunity to Greeks and foreigners to experience the beauty of the islands of the eastern Aegean.
 Firefighters battling blaze in Laconia as Taygetos fire recedesA fire that started on Monday near the village of Archontiko, eight kilometers from the town of Gytheio in Laconia, is burning farmland and forestland, the fire department said.
Authorities have dispatched 30 firemen with 12 vehicles and a hiking unit of eight men, who are assisted by five Pezetel aircraft and two Canadair. Volunteers from nearby villages are also in the area with water tanks.
A separate fire in the area of Pigadia, on Mount Taygetos, has been almost put out but fire-fighting forces remain on spot to prevent a rekindling of the flames.
 Almodovar?s 'Julieta' opens 22nd Athens International Film Festival in SeptemberThe 22nd Athens International Film Festival kicks off on September 21 with the premiere of Spanish director Pedro Almodovar?s new movie, "Julieta".
The film, a familiar and dedicated homage to womanhood, claimed the Palme D?Or at the Cannes Film Festival earlier in the year. To form the script Almodovar combined three novels by Canadian Nobel Laureate Alice Munro.
The invitations-only premiere will be held at the Athens Concert Hall and the full schedule of the festival will be announced on September 14. "Julieta" will be released to Greek cinemas from Odeon on October 20.
Two fires in the Peloponnese brought under control
Firefighting services were able to contain a fire that started on Monday near the village of Archontiko, eight kilometers from the town of Gytheio in Laconia, following their swift response, authorities said.
A strong unit remains in the area to fully extinguish the fire that burned farmland and forestland. A separate blaze in the area of Pigadia, on Mount Taygetos, has been almost put out and there arre no active fronts.
 Fair weather on TuesdayMostly fair weather and northwestern winds are forecast for Tuesday. Wind velocity will reach 5 on the Beaufort scale. Scattered clouds and rain in the afternoon in the northern and the western parts of the country with temperatures ranging from 18C to 34C. Fair in the eastern parts with temperatures from 19C to 36C. Sunny over the Aegean islands and Crete, 23C-33C. Fair weather in Athens, 22C-35C. Scattered clouds in Thessaloniki with rain expected in the afternoon, 21C-34C.
 The Monday edition of Athens' dailies at a glanceDIMOKRATIA: Former Hellenic Statistical Authority's (ELSTAT) chief in panic
ETHNOS: The refugees opened a new corridor
ELEFTHEROS TYPOS: Bonuses and traps at public sector's salaries
ESTIA: A new round of threats on the refugee issue
TA NEA: Imminent contingent mechanism
NAFTEMPORIKI: Real estate transfers more expensive
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