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Athens News Agency: News in English, 09-11-03

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] ND leadership election on Nov. 29
  • [02] McDonald's: No plans to leave Greek market
  • [03] Govt: Levy on corporate profits
  • [04] Euro, Greek econ forecasts

  • [01] ND leadership election on Nov. 29

    Main opposition New Democracy (ND) party members will elect a new party leader on Nov. 29, according to a decision reached by the party's congress organising committee, following deliberations on Tuesday between outgoing ND President Costas Karamanlis and the three remaining candidates vying for the post.

    In case of a second round, voting will take place on Dec. 5. The ND extraordinary party congress will be held this weekend.

    [02] McDonald's: No plans to leave Greek market

    (ŃÕŃ-MPA) -- McDonald‚s Hellas on Tuesday flatly dismissed recent press claims alleging that the company was planning to end its presence in the Greek market.

    In a statement, McDonald‚s Hellas said there was no strategy or thought of leaving the Greek market, as a press article in one weekly claimed. The report has relied on the multinational's decision to reconsider its activities in the Icelandic market.

    The company said its domestic sales have steadily improved in the last three years, as a result of restructuring, including the closing of unprofitable outlets. McDonald‚s said it re-opened six renovated outlets in Greece during the period 2008-2009, with comparative sales rising 11 pct in the January-September 2009 period, compared with the same period in 2008.

    McDonald‚s operates a network of 35 outlets in Greece, of which 13 are franchising contracts.

    [03] Govt: Levy on corporate profits

    The government on Tuesday unveiled a draft law aimed at offering a one-time cash bonus low-income families in the country and imposing a "social responsibility tax" on pre-tax profits of around 300 large companies, along with slapping an extra tax contribution for real estate property valued at more than 600,000 euros.

    Presenting the draft legislation, Finance Minister George Papaconstantinou said it was the first such legislative intervention aimed at increasing social solidarity and noted that this law would benefit more than 2.5 million people, in a plan budgeted at more than one billion euros.

    Papaconstantinou said there 444,500 people currently eligible for bonus, with annual family income ranging between 14,000 and 21,500 euros. Payment of the benefit will be made in two tranches, before Christmas and during 2010.

    The minister stressed that the 300 largest and very profitable enterprises and banks would pay an extra tax on their 2008 pre-tax profits, while another 60,285 owners of large real estate holdings - valued at more than 600,000 euros - would pay an extra tax contribution as well.

    Papaconstantinou said the tax rate on large real estate property would range from 0.20 pct to 0.60 pct with the government hoping to raise 180 million euros from this levy. The government would also impose a 0.3-pct duty on the Autocephalous Orthodox Church of Greece's commercial real estate property. Papaconstantinou said enterprises with pre-tax profits up to and not exceeding 5.0 million euros in 2008 would not pay an extra tax, while for pre-tax profits of more than 5.0 million euros the tax rate would range from 5 pct to 10 pct. The government expects to raise 870 million euros from this tax.

    [04] Euro, Greek econ forecasts

    BRUSSELS (ANA-MPA) -- The European Commission is expected to proceed with the next step in the excessive fiscal deficit procedure against Greece next week, after agreeing that the previous Greek government failed to take the necessary measures in implementing EU recommendations made at an ECOFIN council meeting last spring, EU Monetary Affairs Commissioner Joaquin Almunia said on Tuesday.

    Speaking to reporters during the presentation of the Commission‚s autumn forecasts for the EU economy, Almunia said that ‚based on existing figures the previous government did not take effective action to reduce its deficit‚.

    The European Commission presented its autumn forecasts on the conditions and outlook of European economies by 2011.

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