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Athens News Agency: News in English, 01-04-25
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From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>
 Strike-Trade unions-Thursday25/04/2001 21:56:46
The General Confederation of Workers of Greece (GSEE) and the Civil Servants Supreme Administrative Council (ADEDY) called a 24-hour nationwide general strike for Thursday.
The trade unions also called for rallies in Athens and other major Greek cities in response to the government's proposals on reforming the social security system.
The call for the strike includes employees in both the private and public sectors, while the rally to be held in Athens will take place at the Pedion tou Areos Square at 11 a.m.
Following suit, the Federation of Greek Bank Employee Unions (OTOE) also called on bank employees to participate en masse in both the strike and the rallies.
All public transport, except taxis driven by their owners, is expected to shut down during the 24-hours of the strike.
Journalists' trade unions are also participating in the strike.
 Austria-Greece-Austrian Parliament President25/04/2001 20:20:55
VIENNA (ANA - D. Dimitrakoudis) - Austrian Parliament President Heinz Fischer will arrive in Athens on Thursday on a four-day official visit for talks on intensifying relations between the Greek and Austrian Parliaments.
Issues of mutual interest, ranging from developments in the Balkans to the European Union's future will also be discussed.
Fischer's visit will once again confirm the traditionally close and friendly relations between the peoples of Austria and Greece, relations which even date back to the Byzantine era.
Fischer will be holding talks with Greek Parliament President Apostolos Kaklamanis on Thursday and on Friday he will be having consecutive meetings with Foreign Minister George Papandreou and Prime Minister Costas Simitis, while he will also be received by President Kostis Stephanopoulos.
 Seafarm Ionian-US25/04/2001 20:14:46
Seafarm Ionian on Wednesday announced that it had set up a subsidiary to boost its sales in the US.
The New York based company, Seafarm USA Inc., will initially handle marketing and sales on the eastern seaboard, the parent company said in a statement.
 Foreign Exchange Rates-Thursday25/04/2001 18:40:13
Thursday's buying rates
U.S. dollar 377.813
German mark 172.829
French franc 051.531
Pound sterling 542.837
Irish punt 429.202
Belgian franc 008.379
Luxembourg franc 008.379
Dutch guilder 153.389
Italian lira (100) 017.457
Austrian schilling 024.565
Danish kroner 45.289
Swedish kroner 36.878
Finnish mark 056.852
Spanish peseta 002.032
Portuguese escudo 001.686
Japanese yen (100) 308.566
Swiss franc 220.635
Norwegian kroner 41.411
Cyprus pound 584.476
Canadian dollar 244.879
Australian dollar 190.437
 Cosmote-Nokia-Deal25/04/2001 18:03:24
Cosmote has chosen Nokia to expand its GSM 1800 mobile phone network in a contract worth 140 million euros, the two firms said on Wednesday.
The delivery of infrastructure has already begun for the project, which will meet the increased needs of rapidly growing Cosmote.
Nokia will also supply an integrated package of professional services including project managagement, assistance in network design, training and technical support.
The project is due for completion at the beginning of 2002.
 Weather Forecast-Thursday25/04/2001 16:29:21
Fair weather is forecast throughout the country on Thursday, with some scattered cloud over the mainland. Winds northerly, light to moderate. Temperatures in the north will range from 6C to 26C; on the rest of the mainland and the Ionian from 9C to 28C; and in the Aegean islands from 13C to 24C. Sunshine in Athens, with temperatures between 12C and 27C. Same in Thessaloniki with temperatures from 10C to 26C.
 ASe-close25/04/2001 16:22:43
Equity prices ended mixed to higher on Wednesday, as selective buying for blue chip stocks reversed an initial decline of prices on the Athens Stock Exchange.
Traders said several smaller capitalisation stocks ended lower and noted that the Greek market tested the 3,200 support level.
Greek Soccer Pools (OPAP) saw its share price rise 2.55 percent to 5.64 euros on the first day of trading in the market, sharply off the day's highs.
The general index ended 0.12 percent higher at 3,234.58 points, off the day's lows of 3,199.83 points. Turnover was a low 146.82 million euros, or 50.03 billion drachmas.
The FTSE/ASE 20 index for blue chip and heavy traded stocks ended 0.11 percent higher at 1,891.29 points, and the FTSE/ASE 40 index rose 0.55 percent to 378.98 points.
The parallel market index for smaller capitalisation stocks ended at 326.79 points, up 0.84 percent.
 Cyprus president - official visit - Greece25/04/2001 16:06:19
Cyprus President Glafcos Clerides is to carry out an official visit to Greece on May 2-4.
The Cypriot president, who will be accompanied by his wife, is visiting Athens at the invitation of President of the Republic Kostis Stephanopoulos.
 Greece - Ukraine - Yushchenko25/04/2001 15:15:44
Budding Greek-Ukrainian trade relations were the focus of talks here on Tuesday between Greek leadership and a high-ranking Ukrainian delegation led by reformist Prime Minister Viktor Yushchenko, at the same time that a crucial political debate took place in Kiev.
After meeting with Greek Prime Minister Costas Simitis for approximately an hour and a half, Yushchenko was asked by reporters about the deliberations occurring in the Ukrainian parliament the Verkhovna Rada -- on whether to extend a vote of confidence to his Cabinet.
?The Ukrainian people have made their choice. Indeed, I can express my confidence that with the current government my country will emerge more robust from this crisis...
?Ukraine has solid democratic institutions; my government is firmly devoted to dialogue and democratic methods ? it will proceed unwaveringly towards resolving all the serious problems now preoccupying it,? he told reporters after contacts with the Greek premier.
According to wire reports, Ukraine's Communist-dominated parliament on Tuesday spent hours in often heated debate, including scuffles, on whether to oust Yushchenkos Cabinet, but unexpectedly decided to postpone a no-confidence vote for two days.
Yushchenko, a reform-minded former central banker, was named to lead the Kiev government in late 1999.
On his part, Simitis noted that Ukraines large 55-million-strong market offers a variety of opportunities for Greek firms and exporters, while citing Greek shippers commissioning of several new vessels at Ukrainian shipyards as well as the purchase of hydrofoil transports by Greeces navy.
?We believe that the level of bilateral trade today can be further increased, and thats the direction were working in,? the Greek premier said.
 Cyprus - Greece - Flight deregulation25/04/2001 15:07:08
NICOSIA (ANA) Cyprus has proposed ?freeing up? the skies for commercial flights between the east Mediterranean island republic and Greece by June 2002 if Athens accepts a relevant proposal, officials said here.
According to Cyprus communications, public works and transport minister, Averof Neophytou, Nicosia favours a complete deregulation of both scheduled routes and charter flights from Cyprus to all Greek airports -- sans Athens and Thessaloniki -- beginning in November.
?From April 1, 2002 all flights from the Paphos airport towards Athens and Thessaloniki will be deregulated; June 1, 2002 from Larnaka airport,? Neophytou said.
Along those lines, Cypriot transport ministry authorities are in the Greek capital this week for talks with their counterparts at the Greek ministry.
The Cypriot minister said the proposed deregulation essentially means that all flights from Cyprus to Greece, and vice-versa, will be carried out without restrictions -- ?leading to improvement in provided services and an economic benefit to travelers,? he emphasised.
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