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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 17-01-19

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

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] IMF participation sine qua non for completing 2nd review, Eurozone sources say
  • [02] Famellos, Climate Action Commissioner Cañete discuss emissions targets
  • [03] Eide: Working group on Cyprus successfully concluded its 2nd meeting in Switzerland

  • [01] IMF participation sine qua non for completing 2nd review, Eurozone sources say

    BRUSSELS (ANA/ M. Aroni) The International Monetary Fund's (IMF) participation is sine qua non for completing the second review of Greece's adjustment programme, well-informed Eurozone sources said on Thursday.

    One week ahead of the Eurogroup meeting on January 26, the working hypothesis in Brussels is that the IMF and the European institutions will find a common ground, the sources said. The institutions will then immediately return to Athens and the review will be completed with the IMF's participation before the next Eurogroup on February 20, ahead of elections in the Netherlands, they added.

    A representative of the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) told the Athens-Macedonian News Agency that the ESM "is continuing to work hard so that the IMF remains committed to the Greek programme and continues to work with European institutions."

    Eurozone sources also confirmed to the ANA that the IMF's non-participation in the Greek programme would require a new programme. This would be difficult and time-consuming, they added, since it would require ratification by Eurozone national parliaments and this might take up until the end of 2017. The view that the IMF could participate without contributing funding through a modification of the existing programme was not realistic for the time being, the same sources said.

    [02] Famellos, Climate Action Commissioner Cañete discuss emissions targets

    Greece's industry needs protection from carbon leakage risk due to its proximity with non-EU countries that are not bound by zero-carbon economy commitments, Alternate Environment and Energy Minister Sokratis Famellos told European Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy Miguel Arias Cañete during their meeting on Thursday.

    A ministry announcement issued after the meeting in Athens said it had focused on the proposed revision of the EU's Emissions Trading System (ETS) directive. Famellos noted the need to protect Greece's economy and industry, especially the cement and building materials industry, under the scheme. He said Greece supports the European Commission's initial proposal on this issue, which ensures protection of Greek industry's competitiveness and also high levels of environmental protection.

    Famellos also asked that Greece be included in favourable rules foreseen for countries whose GDP is less than 60 pct of the European average, given that the statistical figures change every year. He proposed that 2014 or 2015 be used as an alternative base years, in addition to 2013, noting that such a measures would provide much-needed additional resources to modernise the energy sector and improve energy efficiency.

    Another topic discussed at the meeting was the EU Monitoring, Reporting, Verification (MRV) Regulation for the shipping sector. Famellos suggested to the Commissioner that, following a recent decision of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) to develop and adopt a similar global system, the European Commission should align itself with the system adopted by the IMO. He pointed out that shipping regulations must concern the entire global fleet in order to be effective, otherwise they lead to ship owners switching national flags without any real benefit for the environment.

    Ministry and commission delegations also discussed financing for a Greek Climate Change Observatory using funds from IPLIFE.

    [03] Eide: Working group on Cyprus successfully concluded its 2nd meeting in Switzerland

    A meeting at the level of deputies and experts discussing Cyprus in Mont Pèlerin, Switzerland on 18-19 January, successfully concluded their second session, UN envoy on Cyprus Espen Barth Eide said in a statement on Thursday.

    "The working group, established during the high-level meeting in Geneva on 12 January, successfully completed the mandate entrusted to it by the Conference, namely identifying specific questions related to the issue of security and guarantees and the instruments needed to address them," he said.

    "The meetings were conducted in a positive spirit. The participants agreed not to disclose details about their discussions, as the proceedings of the conference have not yet concluded," he added.


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