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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 17-05-02

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] The staff level agreement is balanced and sustainable, gov't spokesman Tzanakopoulos says
  • [02] Princess Cruises Fact Sheet chooses Piraeus port for home porting
  • [03] Greek capital markets significantly up on Tuesday
  • [04] Greek economic sentiment index up in April

  • [01] The staff level agreement is balanced and sustainable, gov't spokesman Tzanakopoulos says

    Despite the difficulties and delays as a result of the creditors' irrational demands during the negotiations, the Greek government believes that the staff level agreement is eventually balanced and sustainable, government spokesman Dimitris Tzanakopoulos said on Tuesday during a press briefing.

    Regarding the tax reliefs that will be included in the offset measures to be legislated and implemented together with the measures, Tzanakopoulos said, these are:

    - Reduction of the tax rate for businesses from 29 pct to 26 pct.

    - Reduction of tax rates for individuals from 22 pct to 20 pct.

    - Reduction of the Uniform Real Estate Ownership Tax (ENFIA) by 200 million euros for low and medium income households.

    - Reduction of the solidarity levy, which is zero for those with revenues up to 30,000 euros, while the rest is subject to a reduction.

    The draft law on the prior actions is expected to be tabled in Parliament early next week and voted immediately after the Prime Minister's return from his planned trip to China on May 16, the spokesman added.

    He also announced that there will be a cabinet meeting next Thursday to present the agreement in detail as well as the initiatives for the next period.

    "The government's effort is now focused on the Greek debt," he underlined.

    [02] Princess Cruises Fact Sheet chooses Piraeus port for home porting

    The luxury cruise ship Majestic Princess of Princess Cruises Fact Sheet, a subsidiary of the American Carnival Corporation & Plc, chose the port of Piraeus, which is one of the key nodes for cruising in the Mediterranean, for hme porting this summer.

    The development of Piraeus as a cruise port is very important for both the local and the national economy, as the income from the visitors includes accommodation in hotels, excursions, as well as purchases at the ports of departure and boarding.

    The new cruise ship Majestic Princess made its first trip early on April 4 from Rome and so far has made a total of 3 cruises starting from Rome and Barcelona.

    [03] Greek capital markets significantly up on Tuesday

    Greek capital markets jumped on Tuesday following news that the government has reached an agreement with its creditors to conclude a second review of the Greek bailout program.

    Greek bond prices grew significant, along with share prices in the Athens Stock Exchange. The 10-year Greek bond yield fell to 6.19 pct from 6.39 pct on Friday in the domestic secondary bond market, while the yield spread between the 10-year Greek and German benchmark bonds fell to 5.86 pct. The two-year bond yield fell to historic low levels of 5.72 pct.

    In the Athens Stock Exchange, the general index of the market was up 2.71 pct to 731 points.

    [04] Greek economic sentiment index up in April

    Greek economic sentiment index grew to 94.9 points in April, from 93.4 in March, surpassing last year's corresponding month reading of 90.7 points, the Foundation of Economic and Industrial Research (IOBE) said on Tuesday.

    IOBE, in a monthly report, said business expectations improved in the services sector, it improved slightly in the retail commerce, it remained stable in the manufacturing sector but deteriorated in the construction sector.

    Greek consumer confidence index remained at very low levels, but ended a three-month decline helped by expectations of an imminent conclusion a second review of the Greek bailout program (an agreement was reached in early morning hours of Tuesday).

    More specifically, business expectations remained unchanged in the manufacturing sector, both positive estimates over production and negative estimates over new orders and demand.

    In the construction sector, expectations over work program were more pessimistic, while very negative employment estimates improved slightly.

    In the retail sector, positive estimates over current sales weakened afresh, in contrast with slightly more optimistic estimates over their short-term development.

    In the services sector, negative estimates over the current condition of enterprises began reversing with estimates over short-term demand improving despite a deterioration of estimates over current demand.

    Greek households were less pessimistic over their finances and the country's finances, although estimates over unemployment and savings intention deteriorated further, the latter falling to a new historic-low level.

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