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Athens News Agency: News in English, 06-10-06

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

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] Papandreou in Ankara on Monday
  • [02] FinMin underlines significance of economic reforms
  • [03] Gov't unveils bill for mosque in Athens

  • [01] Papandreou in Ankara on Monday

    Main opposition Panhellenic Socialist Movement (PASOK) leader George Papandreou will depart for Ankara on Monday in his capacity as the president of the Socialist International (SI) and as a member of a Party of European Socialists (PES) delegation following Turkey's accession process.

    Papandreou will be joined, among others, by former Finnish prime minister and current Finnish parliament speaker Paavo Lipponen.

    The delegation is expected to be received by Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Recep Erdogan and Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul, among others.

    Prior to his visit to Ankara, Papandreou will tour the large island of Crete over the weekend.

    [02] FinMin underlines significance of economic reforms

    Economic reforms, promoted by national governments, are offering the opportunity to both enterprises and households to deal effectively with the challenges of globalisation, Economy and Finance Minister George Alogoskoufis said on Friday.

    Addressing the 14th annual assembly of Eurochambres in Thessaloniki, the Greek minister stressed that the reform policy, in order to have the best possible results, must be supported by a detailed and constant dialogue with the society.

    Alogoskoufis said he supported the view that globalisation was an opportunity for more prosperity, but also accepted some worries over its impact on social issues. "Globalisation must be dealt with as a challenge," he noted.

    "Enterprises can remain competitive by improving their productivity and expanding their activities to the benefit of employment, while consumers benefit from cheaper goods imported from developing countries. As a result, globalisation is not necessary leading to lower real wages in the EU, but to global economic growth," he said.

    The Greek minister underlined the need to introduce, in European level, policies aimed to boost economic growth and to combatting unemployment and social exclusion. He also urged for the creation of a new knowledge and its integration in production procedure and to determine a single identity for European products.

    Alogoskoufis said the Lisbon Strategy needed to be more effectively promoted within national economies and stressed the importance of the role of enterprises and employers' unions towards this goal.

    [03] Gov't unveils bill for mosque in Athens

    The government on Friday unveiled a draft bill foreseeing the construction of a contemporary mosque in the greater Athens area, which would be the first official Muslim place of worship in the Greek capital in many decades.

    The draft bill was presented by Education and Religious Affairs Minister Marietta Yiannakou.

    She stated that the proposed building should be ready in two to three years and will operate under the ministry‚s supervision on public land at the site of a former camp (Eleonas) in central Athens once operated by the navy.

    She added that the mosque will operate with a private law institutional framework while a board of directors will be established. The overall cost of the project, undertaken exclusively by the education ministry, is estimated at 15 million euros.

    Yiannakou stressed that each major Muslim denomination will be able to have its own imam, who will have to meet basic qualifications, however.

    Moreover, she ruled out the possibility of an Islamic "cultural center" being founded in the same area, before adding that Archbishop of Athens and All Christodoulos has also consented to the idea of allowing a mosque in the greater Athens area.


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