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Athens News Agency: News in English, 00-06-29
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From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>
 UN Human Development report - Greece29/06/2000 21:27:56
Greece ranked 25th among 174 countries in the United Nations' human development index for the year 2000, which was presented by the UN office in Athens on Thursday.
Last year Greece had come 27th.
This is the 10th such report, which ranks countries based on a calculation that combines such factors as income levels, health and education levels and life expectancy, among others.
Canada tops the list for the seventh consecutive year, with Norway and the US taking second and third place respectively. Cyprus ranks 22nd and the last two places go to Nigeria and Sierra Leone.
 Reppas - Cyprus (Recasts)29/06/2000 20:48:37
Government Spokesman Dimitris Reppas said on Thursday the Greek government was not optimistic over the outcome of the new round of proximity talks on the Cyprus issue.
He said expectations were not high about the third round of UN-led proximity talks between Cyprus President Glafcos Clerides and Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash and this was due to the negative stance of the other side.
Reppas also said that Clerides' visit to Athens next Monday and his
meeting with Greek Prime Minister Costas Simitis in view of proximity
talks to be resumed in Geneva on July 5, would be "substantive".
Commenting on the prospects of the third round of talks, Reppas said:
"I would say that nobody can talk about optimism. We cannot have high expectations because of the completely negative attitude of the other (Turkish) side" and added, "we should show the international community that the Turkish side is the one to blame for the deadlock" in efforts for a settlement of the Cyprus problem.
Earlier on Thursday Dnktash's spokesman Salih Miroglou announced in Nicosia that the Turkish leader would participate in the talks.
Denktash had been threatening not to go to Geneva because of the non-inclusion of an addendum in the UN Secretary General's report with a Turkish Cypriot demand for separate consultations with the UN Peace-Keeping Force in Cyprus(UNFICYP).
 ABNA meeting in Athens29/06/2000 20:12:05
The 10th General Assembly of the Association of Balkan News Agencies (ABNA) is to take place in Athens on July 1-3, at the Divani-Caravel hotel.
It will be attended by the general directors of the national news agencies of Albania (ATA), Bulgaria (BTA), Yugoslavia (TANJUG), Greece (ANA and MPA), FYROM (MIA), Romania (ROMPRESS) and Turkey (AA), while the Moldova news agency (MOLDPRESS) and the private IHA news agency in Turkey will be sending observers.
During the meeting, the Balkan news agencies will discuss joint actions to improve the flow of information to the mass media in their countries, joint participation in European programmes and using new technologies to set up a regional data base.
The ABNA presidency is currently held by the Athens News Agency (ANA).
On July 3, the ANA and Turkey's Anatolian Agency (AA) will sign the first agreement for cooperation between them, including the exchange of news items and photographs, as well as for more general cooperation and exchange of knowhow.
 Foreign Exchange Rates-Friday29/06/2000 18:43:28
Following are indicative foreign exchange rates released by the central bank for the next working day.
Fridays rates (buying)
U.S. dollar 351.277
German mark 170.806
 Weather Forecast-Friday29/06/2000 18:34:11
Sunny weather is forecast in many parts of the country on Friday, turning to scattered cloud on the mainland from late afternoon.
 Victoria state - Language dispute - FYROM29/06/2000 17:43:16
MELBOURNE (ANA S. Hatzimanolis) -- An organisation representing self-described ?Macedonian? educators of Australia has again taken recourse to that countrys human rights committee in order to force the state of Victoria not to identify their language as ?Slavomacedonian?.
The state government in Melbourne has refused to satisfy the groups demand following a recent decision by Australias high court. Immigrants from the region of the former Yugoslavia today comprising the Former Yugoslav Republic of Yugoslavia (FYROM) have increasingly demanded over the past decade that the idiom spoken in the landlocked state be identified as ?Macedonian? in Australia.
 Sanyo Hellas Holding-shareholders' meeting29/06/2000 16:50:31
A Sanyo Hellas Holding general shareholders' meeting on Thursday approved dividend payment of 232 drachmas per share, up from 165 drachmas last year, and a two-for-10 free share offering to shareholders along with the capitalisation of the company's reserves and an increase in its nominal share price.
Sanyo Hellas Holding reported a 572 percent jump in its 1999 profits to 2.5 billion drachmas from 372 million in 1998 and a turnover of 41.6 billion drachmas from 17.9 bln the previous year, an increase of 132 percent
Group profits jumped to 8.1 billion drachmas, from 2.3 billion in 1998 for a rise of 252 percent.
The company's moves aim to raise its equity capital to around 42 billion drachmas paving the way for a convertible bond issue, worth 20 billion drachmas. The plan is expected to be discussed in an extraordinary general shareholders' meeting in July.
The meeting also elected its new strong 21-member board and approved a plan to transfer the company from the Miscellaneous to the Holding sector on the Athens Stock Exchange.
Sanyo Hellar Holding announced the purchase of a 35 percent stake in training and consultants firm Amacon.
 Greece-External Trade Organisation29/06/2000 15:56:50
Greece's External Trade Organisation (OPE) on Thursday rejected recent press reports over its abolition, saying they were "inaccurate and completely opposed to the reality".
"The truth is that currently and in the framework of international and domestic developments, an overall upgrading of the country's international economic relations is drafted, along with efforts to support the role of agencies, like OPE, in enriching and improving services offered to Greek exporters," a statement said.
 European Financial Management-conference29/06/2000 15:56:42
University professors and financial organisations' executives from around the world are participating in an international financial conference held in an Athens from Thursday, June 29 to Saturday, July 1.
It is the 9th conference of the European Financial Management Company, held under the auspices of the Greek ALBA institute and chaired by professor Nikos Travlos.
The conference discusses the most contemporary developments in the theory and practice in finance and banking in connection with current developments in international capital and money markets.
 ASE-close29/06/2000 15:39:09
Equity prices continued moving lower on Thursday, but at a more moderate pace this time in subdued turnover on the Athens Stock Exchange.
Analysts said that the market would find support at the 4,000 level currently.
The general index ended at 4,071.40 points, off 0.65 percent, but off the day's lows of 4,019.46 points. Turnover was a low 120 billion drachmas.
Traders said the index recovered with the help of a late buying intervention focused on selective blue chip stocks.
The FTSE/ASE 20 index for blue chip and heavy traded stocks ended at 2,251.77 points, off 0.30 percent and the FTSE/ASE 40 index fell 1.87 percent to 579.86 points.
The parallel market index for smaller capitalisation stocks ended at 761.18 points, down 2.03 percent.
 Loulis Group-Romanian acquisitions29/06/2000 15:26:59
Loulis Group, a listed Greek flour mills company, on Thursday announced the acquisition of two cement-built wheat storage silos in Romania for an undisclosed sum, raising the group's total storage capacity to 300,000 tonnes in Greece, Bulgaria and Romania.
The contracts were signed by the group's chairman, Costas Loulis, in Bucharest on Thursday.
The first storage facility unit, with a capacity of 70,000 tonnes built in 1980, is located 280 km southwest of Bucharest, near the Danube river and the second, with a storage capacity of 50,000 tonnes, is located in central Romania, next to Transylvania flour mills, owned by Loulis.
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