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Athens News Agency: News in English, 00-12-13

Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Defence minister- arms procurement-regional threats
  • [02] Banks-Rate Cuts
  • [03] Thessaloniki-FM Papandreou-FYROM FM
  • [04] Stock Market-Close
  • [05] Weather Forecast-Thursday

  • [01] Defence minister- arms procurement-regional threats

    13/12/2000 20:58:56

    The policies of the Greek government aim at countermanding Turkeys tendencies to revise the status quo, as Greece remains under the threat of the neighbouring country, Defence Minister Akis Tsohatzopoulos told the Parliament Committee on Foreign and Defence Affairs on Wednesday.

    ?It is clear that the threat from Turkey remains ? there is no certainty? for the security of the country, he said.

    At the same time Greece can not ignore developments in the region or its commitments to international security organisations, thus it should retain its plans for ?defensive armaments,? Tsohatzopoulos said.

    [02] Banks-Rate Cuts

    13/12/2000 20:14:52

    Four banks on Wednesday announced interest rate cuts in the wake of a decline of 75 basis points in the central bank's short-term intervention rates this week.

    Commercial Bank of Greece, a large state-owned bank, is to lower its lending rates by up to 25 basis points and deposit rates by 75 basis points or more.

    The bank's savings deposit rate will fall to 3.75 percent from 5.25 percent and its base loans rate to 7.25 percent.

    Announcing similar reductions were Bank of Piraeus, ABN Amro and Bank of Attica.

    [03] Thessaloniki-FM Papandreou-FYROM FM

    13/12/2000 20:04:51

    Foreign Minister George Papandreou and his counterpart from the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) Sergan Kerim held their first meeting in Thessaloniki, northern Greece, on Wednesday and expressed concern over tension prevailing in southern Serbia, as well as their certainty over the good course of relations between Athens and Skopje.

    Papandreou and Kerim had a 30-minute meeting as the heads of the two countries' diplomatic delegations.

    Earlier, they had inaugurated new installations of the neighbouring country's customs in Gevgeli, in the presence of FYROM Prime Minister Ljubco Georgievski.

    Papandreou said, during a joint press conference, that during their meeting they had a telephone conversation with Albanian Prime Minister Ilir Meta and exchanged views with him on developments in the region.

    Papandreou spoke of an "alarming situation in southern Serbia", while his position was shared by Kerim who said the issue is of "vital importance" for his country.

    Papandreou said problems in the region cannot be resolved with force and changes in borders, adding that "some of our thoughts will be conveyed to the session of NATO ministers tomorrow (Thursday)."

    According to Papandreou's statements, bilateral issues discussed included economic cooperation through the Stability Pact, the creation of an economic relations office by FYROM in Thessaloniki and the opening of a Greek consular office at Monastiri.

    On his part, Kerim said relations with Athens are proceeding "with small but steady steps in the new era". "It is these small steps which will lead us ahead," he added.

    "Our relations have a quality which can be gauged on the basis of European models," he said.

    On the question of FYROM's name, Papandreou said negotiations are continuing in the framework of the UN and expressed hope that the positive bilateral relations will also have favourable repercussions on this issue.

    [04] Stock Market-Close

    13/12/2000 17:59:37

    Equities on the Athens Stock Exchange finished sharply lower in light trade on Wednesday amid jitters that stockbrokers and executives from listed firms would be called to testify by a prosecutor as part of an investigation into alleged malpractice.

    The Athens general index finished 3.15 percent lower at 3,498.69 points, with turnover at 106.03 billion drachmas.

    [05] Weather Forecast-Thursday

    13/12/2000 17:41:01

    Sunny skies are forecast throughout the country on Thursday with scattered cloud in the north and centre. Limited early-morning visibility in mainland Greece. Winds north-northwesterly, light to moderate, turning strong at sea in the south. In the north, temperatures will range from 2C to 19C; on the rest of the mainland from 3C to 21C; and in the islands from 6C to 20C. Temperatures in Athens between 7C and 19C; and in Thessaloniki from 6C to 18C.

    Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article
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