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Athens News Agency: News in English, 02-08-28

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>

CONTENTS

  • [01] Athens Stock Exchange opening: slight drop
  • [02] Foreign Exchange Rates - Wednesday
  • [03] Weather: Mostly sunny on Wednesday, rain in northwest
  • [04] National Bank seeks to expand activities abroad
  • [05] Yugoslav Deputy PM meets with Greek prime minister and FM
  • [06] DM, US ambassador discuss Euro-defence issues
  • [07] PM urges vigilance over 2004 Olympics budget
  • [08] Four arrested on antiquities smuggling charges
  • [09] Foreign Exchange Rates - Wednesday
  • [10] Weather: Mostly sunny on Wednesday, rain in northwest
  • [11] Greek stocks end flat on Tuesday

  • [01] Athens Stock Exchange opening: slight drop

    28/08/2002 12:01:57

    Equities were losing ground in slow trade at the opening of the session Wednesday on the Athens Stock Exchange, following downward trends in foreign markets.

    The general share price index was down 0.44 per cent quarter of an hour after trade opened, standing at 2,169.01 points, with turnover at 2.9 million euros.

    Individual sector indices were mostly moving down, with the biggest gains in Textiles, down 1.05 per cent, and the biggest gains in Ores and Cement, up 0.54 per cent.

    The FTSE/ASE 20 index for blue chip and heavily traded stocks was down 0.54 percent, the FTSE/ASE MID 40 index was down 0.35 percent, and the FTSE/ASE SmallCap 80 index was down 0.73 percent.

    Of the stocks moved, 40 were up, 141 were down and 45 were unchanged.

    [02] Foreign Exchange Rates - Wednesday

    28/08/2002 11:54:26

    Reference buying rates per euro released by the European Central Bank

    U.S. dollar 0.985

    Pound sterling 0.645

    Danish kroner 7.484

    Swedish kroner 9.207

    Japanese yen 116.3

    Swiss franc 1.481

    Norwegian kroner 7.439

    Cyprus pound 0.578

    Canadian dollar 1.527

    Australian dollar 1.780

    [03] Weather: Mostly sunny on Wednesday, rain in northwest

    28/08/2002 11:54:20

    Mostly sunny throughout Greece on Wednesday, with local cloud in the west, central and northern parts of the country building up to showers or storms in the afternoon. Winds southerly, light to moderate, in the west; northerly, strong to very strong, in the east and rising to gale force in the Aegean. Temperatures between 17C to 31C in the north; 18C to 33C in the rest of the mainland and Ionian; and 22C to 30C in the Aegean. Sunny in Athens, 22C to 33C; cloudy in Thessaloniki, 20C to 30C.

    [04] National Bank seeks to expand activities abroad

    27/08/2002 23:01:21

    National Bank of Greece aims to strengthen its presence abroad in the framework of a bank strategy to become a powerful regional financial group in the Balkans and the wider Southeastern Europe with a respectable presence in the world's largest financial centres.

    National Bank is present in 18 countries around the world and owns seven banks and eight financial services firms. The Greek bank operates a network of more than 300 branches abroad and employs more than 5,000 people.

    National Bank's executives expect that the bank's foreign activities will contribute around 20 percent to the group's profitability this year, up from an initial target of 15 percent for the year. This rate is projected to reach 25 percent in 2003 and 30 percent in 2004. The rate of profits from international activities to the group's profitability was just 2.5 percent in 1998.

    The US (Atlantic Bank of New York), UK, Bulgaria (UBB), Cyprus, Canada and Egypt are the most profitable countries for the bank.

    National Bank is expected to focus its activities in the Balkans, namely in Romania and Albania, and to further strengthen its presence in the US market.

    [05] Yugoslav Deputy PM meets with Greek prime minister and FM

    27/08/2002 22:58:59

    Visiting Deputy Prime Minister Federal Government of FR Yugoslavia Miroljub Labus on Tuesday had separate meetings with Prime Minister Costas Simitis and Foreign Minister George Papandreou.

    The political and economic stability of Yugoslavia, the recent developments in Kosovo and the broader Balkan Peninsula, as well as the implementation of Athens' plan for Balkan reconstruction, with special emphasis on the reconstruction of the Belgrade-Thessaloniki road-axis represented the main discussion items at both meetings.

    In post-meeting statements, Papandreou referred to the agreement recently signed with Serbia within the framework of the Greek plan for Balkan reconstruction, placing special emphasis on the reconstruction of the Belgrade-Thessaloniki road-axis 10, which is of great importance for boosting tourism and growth in the region.

    The minister reiterated that during its EU presidency, Greece was going to promote Yugoslavia's European course and more specifically, the signature of a joining and stability agreement.

    The Yugoslav official said that the Belgrade-Thessaloniki axis reconstruction should commence as soon as possible; with regard to the European future of his country, he expressed his desire for the completion of joining and stability negotiations during Greece's EU presidency.

    [06] DM, US ambassador discuss Euro-defence issues

    27/08/2002 22:52:51

    The complex issue of Europes defence strategy as well as the pending ?Euro-Army? matter dominated a meeting on Tuesday between Defence Minister Yiannos Papantoniou and US ambassador to Athens Thomas Miller, with the former later briefing reporters on a variety of Greek defence concerns.

    Papantoniou reiterated that Athens would push for the creation and operation of the much-expected ?European Rapid Deployment Force? within the year.

    He added that efforts to smooth-over differences between the EU and NATO over the scope and operational capability of such a force also constitute a priority, while noting that the Greek government is interested in finding an ?ad hoc? compromise to allow for the build-up and deployment of a European peacekeeping force in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM).

    Additionally, he said both Athens and Washington agreed to step up contacts and cooperation over security issues for the 12 months which began earlier in the summer -- of Greeces presidency of the EU Common Foreign and Defence Policy portfolio.

    [07] PM urges vigilance over 2004 Olympics budget

    27/08/2002 22:49:12

    Prime Minister Costas Simitis stressed on Tuesday that the hefty budget for the upcoming Athens Olympics must be ?dutifully maintained?, in comments to his top Cabinet ministers and the Athens 2004 organising committee (ATHOC) leadership.

    ''New funding needs for envisioned or new projects must be covered by internal shifting of approved resources ...'' Simitis said during an inter-ministerial meeting focusing on preparations for the Games.

    The meeting was attended by a handful of related ministry heads as well as ATHOC executives, led by Gianna Angelopoulos-Daskalaki.

    In praising ATHOC and other affiliated state agencies for the recent Olympic sailing ?test event? in a coastal Athens suburb an event that reaped kudos from the press and participating athletes Simitis announced that he will tour several Olympic construction venues and related infrastructure projects next month.

    [08] Four arrested on antiquities smuggling charges

    27/08/2002 21:46:14

    A French national and three Polish nationals were arrested on antiquities smuggling charges on Tuesday, after authorities in Sitia, on the island of Crete, reportedly made a check on a yacht that they were using, the vehicle of the former and a residence that two of them were using in Palaiokastro, near Sitia in southeastern Crete.

    The police check uncovered diving equipment, urns possibly from the Minoan era, the lead part from a ship from the Byzantine era, as well as camera film with pictures of antiquities.

    The suspects were identified as Niemkiewicz Piotr, aged at 48, Skoczynski Ryszard, aged at 59, Kantor Leszek, aged at 57 and Niemkeiwicz Magdalena, aged at 55.

    [09] Foreign Exchange Rates - Wednesday

    27/08/2002 19:19:30

    Reference buying rates per euro released by the European Central Bank

    U.S. dollar 0.985

    Pound sterling 0.645

    Danish kroner 7.484

    Swedish kroner 9.207

    Japanese yen 116.3

    Swiss franc 1.481

    Norwegian kroner 7.439

    Cyprus pound 0.578

    Canadian dollar 1.527

    Australian dollar 1.780

    [10] Weather: Mostly sunny on Wednesday, rain in northwest

    27/08/2002 19:00:57

    Mostly sunny throughout Greece on Wednesday, with local cloud in the west, central and northern parts of the country building up to showers or storms in the afternoon. Winds southerly, light to moderate, in the west; northerly, strong to very strong, in the east and rising to gale force in the Aegean. Temperatures between 17C to 31C in the north; 18C to 33C in the rest of the mainland and Ionian; and 22C to 30C in the Aegean. Sunny in Athens, 22C to 33C; cloudy in Thessaloniki, 20C to 30C.

    [11] Greek stocks end flat on Tuesday

    27/08/2002 16:41:50

    Greek stocks ended Tuesday's session flat with the Athens Stock Exchange moving within very a tight range for one more session. Traders said buying interest for banks and blue chips helped the general index to a higher closing. The index ended 0.22 percent higher at 2,178.65 points, with turnover a low 75.1 million euros.

    THe Publication, Retail and Food-Beverage sectors scored the biggest percentage gains of the day (1.26 percent, 0.93 percent and 0.86 percent, respectively), while the Construction, Textile and Base Metal sectors suffered losses (0.90 percent, 0.83 percent and 0.72 percent).

    The FTSE/ASE 20 index for blue chip and heavy traded stocks ended 0.42 percent higher, the FTSE/ASE MID 40 index rose 0.14 percent and the FTSE/ASE SmallCap 80 index fell 0.36 percent.

    Broadly, advancers led decliners by 155 to 134 with another 68 issues unchanged.


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