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Athens News Agency: News in English, 09-11-12

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] ND leadership race heats up
  • [02] Greece reiterates significance of Burgas-Alexandroupoli oil pipeline project
  • [03] Alternate FM briefs President
  • [04] Unemployment at 9.0 pct

  • [01] ND leadership race heats up

    The race for the new leadership of main opposition New Democracy (ND) is heating up, with the November 29 election date less than three weeks away, and the three candidates accelerating their campaigns.

    Candidate Panagiotis Psomiadis, who is the prefect of Thessaloniki, will be meeting with party officials and supporters in the prefectures of Drama and Kavala on Thursday.

    Candidate Antonis Samaras, the former culture minister, will address a rally in Neo Iraklio on Thursday afternoon, and later another rally in Megara, near Athens.

    The third candidate, former foreign minister Dora Bakoyannis, will pay a two-day visit to Crete on Friday and Saturday, where she will address rallies in all four prefectures on the island.

    Caption:ANA-MPA file photo of candidate for ND leadership Dora Bakoyannis(L), candidate Antonis Samaras(C) and candidate Panagiotis Psomiadis(R).

    [02] Greece reiterates significance of Burgas-Alexandroupoli oil pipeline project

    The Burgas-Alexandroupoli oil pipeline project is a significant project with geopolitical, financial and energy importance, Greek Foreign Affairs Deputy Minister Spyros Kouvelis said on Thursday.

    Speaking to reporters, on the sidelines of a Black Sea Business Forum in Thessaloniki, the Greek minister said Greece and Bulgaria shared the same views on the project and underlined the strong interest of both countries to proceed with the plan.

    "In consultations with the Environment ministry we need to ensure all environmental terms and to begin building a project well designed to the benefit of the energy industry, citizens and Greece in general," Kouvelis said.

    The Greek minister said the Black Sea region was the natural neighbourhood of Greece and that the country needed to boost cooperation in business activities with neighbouring countries and cooperation for sustainable and green development in the region.

    The Greek government supported, through bilateral and regional agreements, the promotion of a Road Ring in Black Sea, a project adopted by Russia. "Our aim is to facilitate, through diplomacy, secondary matters, giving a boost to the most significant infrastructure and development projects in the region," he noted.

    Kouvelis said a special fund aimed at offering support and development help to countries in the Black Sea region was underway and added that the Black Sea region was rich, but it had to support its development with its own resources along with any foreign help.

    A memorandum of cooperation to build a Road Ring was signed in 2007 but Foreign ministers of the Black Sea Cooperation Pact. The road project has a length of around 7.000 km with vertical road connections for Azerbaijan, Serbia and Albania.

    [03] Alternate FM briefs President

    Alternate foreign minister Dimitris Droutsas was received by President of the Republic Karolos Papoulias on Thursday, in their first formal meeting since last month's general elections that brought PASOK to power.

    Droutsas told reporters afterwards that he briefed the President on the new government's targets and first initiatives on foreign policy issues, adding that he intended to seek Papoulias', a former foreign minister himself, advice, noting that their meetings will be "very frequent".

    Papoulias asked Droutsas about his recent visit to Berlin, on the occasion of events marking the 20th anniversary of the Berlin Wall, and the alternate foreign minister noted that Greece had once again stressed that "unfortunately a wall still remains today in the United Europe, our European family, namely in Cyprus".

    "This wall must at last be torn down," Droutsas added.

    Caption: ANA-mPA file photo of the Presidential mansion in Athens

    [04] Unemployment at 9.0 pct

    Greek unemployment fell to 9.0 pct in August, from 9.6 pct in July, but remained sharply higher compared with a 7.1 pct rate in August last year, the National Statistical Service said on Thursday.

    The number of unemployed people totaled 452,706 in August, up 27.6 pct from the corresponding month in 2008. The statistics service said unemployment among men was 7.2 pct and among women 11.6 pct in August, with the 15-24 age group recording the highest unemployment rate (24.2 pct), followed by the 25-34 age group (11.8 pct).

    Eastern Macedonia/Thrace (12.1 pct), Central Greece (10.9 pct) and central Macedonia (10.4 pct) recorded the highest unemployment rates in the country, while Ionian islands (3.8 pct), the Peloponese (5.1 pct), southern Aegean and Crete (6.3 pct) the lowest unemployment rates.

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