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Athens News Agency: News in English, 06-03-09

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Globalisation full of risks and opportunities, deputy FM says

  • [01] Globalisation full of risks and opportunities, deputy FM says

    Globalisation is full of risks but also opportunities, Deputy Foreign Minister Evripidis Stylianidis said speaking at the New School of Athens event on Thursday, on the theme 'Beyond the Millennium Declaration-Embracing Democracy and Good Governance".

    "The 'New School of Athens' constitutes an important initiative, both symbolic as well as substantive, that tries to fuse various opinions floating internationally regarding global governance," he said, speaking on behalf of Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis, who inaugurated this institution in her previous capacity as Athens Mayor.

    Because the New School of Athens views globalisation as a reality full of opportunities, the foreign ministry's Hellenic Aid agency has decided "to participate and support this initiative with ideas, positions and actions, hoping that we will thus contribute decisively and dynamically in the solution of international problems, in the understanding of civilisations, in the harmonious balancing of technology on the one and the democratic, eternal and human principles on the other."

    "Globalisation renders borders porous and internationalises problems. Bullet-free states do not exist anymore. Problems travel fast, they know or recognise no borders and they threaten even the developed societies," he added.

    The internationalisation of problems therefore requires "an international alliance to confront these problems at the source, at least the ones that are manageable, as for instance poverty which, despite the Millennium Declaration has taken on uncontrollable dimensions," Stylianidis said.

    The deputy minister also referred to the 'Millennium Goals', noting that while they were set out by the UN in 2000, they have still to be attained.

    "During the recent meeting of the world leaders that took place at the United Nations in September 2005, all participants agreed that the world community moves extremely slow and often with poor results, it therefore needs to intensify and better coordinate its efforts both within the international organisations and among member states themselves and, of course, among the Citizens' Society," he noted.

    He went on to describe Greece's contribution, saying that "in this international alliance that acts under the umbrella of the United Nations, Greece became donor for the first time after the year 2000, as up until then she was considered a recipient country."

    "Our political participation in the war against global poverty became more systematic and intense after the year 2004, when Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis assured the President of the European Commission Mr. Barroso and stated publicly at the UN Security Council and in the gathering of the world leaders in September of that year that Greece, despite her budgetary constraints will contribute with all her powers in the realisation of the 'Millennium Goals' following the European targets," Stylianidis continued.

    In 2004, Greece spent 464 million or 0.23% of GNP for activities undertaken in the developing world, either bilaterally, multilaterally, through international organisations or through the Citizens' Society, according to the deputy minister.

    Referring to the ministry's Hellenic Aid agency, Stylianidis described it as 'the national coordinator' of Greece's policy of international cooperation and assistance.

    "If the political diplomacy develops relations among governments, the economic diplomacy develops relations among markets and the development cooperation promotes relations among societies, ie. among people. It is certain that the latter are much more powerful, as they contribute to the understanding of civilisations," he said.

    "During this past year, Hellenic Aid, restructured to be more transparent and efficient, realised, together with NGOs, programmes of development assistance or urgent humanitarian/food assistance in 46 countries," he said.

    Referring to the Balkans and the Hellenic Plan for the Economic Reconstruction of the Balkans, Stylianidis said that Greece has spent 550 million on infrastructure projects while Greek private investments total more than 8 billion in the region, creating more than 200,000 jobs.

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