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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 15-05-28

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

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] Government aims for a deal with partners by Sunday
  • [02] Government at dead end, announcing non-existent agreements, ND spokesman claims
  • [03] FinMin says agreement on 14 regional airports a matter of days‏

  • [01] Government aims for a deal with partners by Sunday

    ANA/MPA---The government's optimism is founded on data, government spokesman Gavriil Sakellaridis on Thursday said during the political briefing and added that the aim is to have an agreement with the partners by Sunday.

    Sakellaridis also reassured that there is no the slightest reason for concern in relation to banks.

    Regarding the Balkans' European perspective, he said that the Greek government has repeatedly stressed its importance. "Bodies imbued with other perceptions undermine this prospect," he stated.

    He also said that Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis enjoys the support of the Prime Minister adding that the government along with the partners ensure that there is no possibility of default.

    Referring to the agreement, he said: "We are talking about a common text of the Greek government with the institutions. It is time we wrote on paper the points we agree on."

    [02] Government at dead end, announcing non-existent agreements, ND spokesman claims

    ANA/MPA---Attacking the government on Thursday, main opposition New Democracy spokesman Costas Karagounis said it was at a dead end and reduced to announcing non-existent agreements based on its own positions, only to have its announcements refuted by all foreign officials.

    "Time is up and the money has run out," Karagounis said.

    The spokesman once again referred to a "grand understanding" that would lead the country out of the crisis and allow an agreement with the creditors that ensured the country's financing and the "recovery, that we struggled so hard to achieve and is now turning into a recession."

    At this point, there was no room for ideological obsessions or party priorities but only the good of the country, he added.

    [03] FinMin says agreement on 14 regional airports a matter of days‏

    ANA/MPA---Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis on Thursday reassured the Greek Parliament that the government will reach a deal with its partners over the next few days and at the same time an agreement for the exploitation of 14 regional airports in the country with much more favorable terms for the Greek state and private investors as well.

    Speaking in Parliament, in response to a question by ND deputy Eleftherios Avgenakis, Varoufakis said that the government will continue this process and that it was already in negotiations with its partners over the issue. "I assure you that as a negotiation was reaching its end over the next few days, so will this issue," the Finance minister said, adding that this process will be based on three criteria:

    - investments must be higher. "A commitment for 23.5 million euros in investments for four years per airport is very low for me," he said.

    - there must be a share for the state. "The state must hold an asset which can be exploited in the framework of a development bank, a development vehicle, through leverage with other development banks such as EIB to maximize synergies from the exploitation of state property," Varoufakis noted.

    - there must be clear commitments over local economies from airport operations.

    Varoufakis strongly criticized previous privatizations saying they proved to be catastrophic even for private investors since they were rejected by higher courts or competition authorities. He added that Hellenic Republic Asset Development Fund offered contracts and agreements to private investors that were finally unsecured. "This must change. You will see that with the completion of negotiations the terms will change. Contracts will become more positive both for the state and for private investors," Varoufakis reassured. He noted that his colleagues in the EU responded negatively to his question whether they would agree to a 40-year concession without any provision for that state, or regional authorities. "They would not agree under those terms," Varoufakis said, adding "this is not an issue of contradiction but an issue of national strategy".

    He said that as an economist "he has a problem with the idea of selling 14 regional airports to the same company," adding "I don't know any country where such a thing happened".

    Varoufakis said that the Greek state has a continuance and that the government has pledged to respect any legal procedure currently underway.


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