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Athens News Agency: News in English, 06-06-26

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] OECD's Gurria praises govt's economic policy
  • [02] Polyzogopoulos resigns from GSEE union's helm
  • [03] Glyptotheque permanent collections to open

  • [01] OECD's Gurria praises govt's economic policy

    Greece is a distinguished member of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), Angel Gurria, the new secretary-general of the organisation, said on Monday, adding that he would cooperate closely with Greek Economy and Finance Minister George Alogoskoufis and that the organisation was willing to support economic reforms in the country.

    Speaking to reporters, the Greek minister said he briefed Mr Gurria over the beginning of a dialogue to resolve the pension problem in the country. "A report by OECD will help us and I believe that results would not questioned by anyone," he said, adding that the Greek government would use this report to adopt initiatives aimed at reforming the pension system after the next general elections in the country.

    Both the Greek minister and Gurria referred to the successful ministerial meeting held in Paris and also discussed the future of OECD and its expansion. The talks also included reference to the condition of the Greek economy.

    Challenges ahead are more difficult, Gurria said and emphasized that the Greek government had to take very difficult decisions since the country's financial situation was not properly evaluated.

    Despite a risk of defamating the country's public image, the government successfully and in a transparent manner properly evaluated its fiscal condition, OECD's official said, adding that there was a very positive improvement in the country's fiscal deficit.

    Gurria, however, underlined the very high unemployment rate among young people, three times more than the EU average, and high unemployment rate among women, and urged for government measures on retirement status, healthcare and offering of incentives to sectors with high unemployment rates.

    "I would make the same recommendations to all OECD member-states," Gurria told reporters, adding that there was the need to correct the trends of these phenomena. "Reforms are necessary and the social insurance system will not be able to pass the test of time," he said.

    [02] Polyzogopoulos resigns from GSEE union's helm

    Greece's largest trade union umbrella group (GSEE) on Monday announced that its president, Christos Polyzogopoulos, will resign in order to seek out other political activities, a development largely expected for several days now.

    Speaking to reporters, Polyzogopoulos, a member of the main opposition PASOK party that backed his previous campaigns for the top union spot, said an extraordinary GSEE general assembly meeting to elect his successor will be held on July 5. Additionally, he threw his backing for Yiannis Panagopoulos, the union's current organising secretary, who is also a PASOK-backed trade unionist.

    In one of his last acts as the head of Greece's largest union, Polyzogopoulos urged the trade union to boycott a government-established "experts commission" for dialogue regarding social security reforms, referring instead to "a responsible public dialogue" on education and various industrial actions in September after the end of the summer holiday season.

    Earlier, PASKE's (the PASOK-affiliated grouping within GSEE) executive committee unanimously elected Panagopoulos as its new secretary and announced its support should he vie for the GSEE presidency.

    Asked to comment on the development, Labour and Social Securities Minister Savvas Tsitouridis noted that Polyzogopoulos' work was significant in defining the roles of "social partners" in the country and assisting in the modernisation of labour relations.

    [03] Glyptotheque permanent collections to open

    The permanent exhibitions at Greece's National Glyptotheque, featuring a range of Greek and foreign works of sculpture from the last two centuries, will be inaugurated on Tuesday night by President of the Hellenic Republic Karolos Papoulias.

    The exhibits form part of the permanent collection of Greek sculpture owned by the Alexandros Soutsos Museum, that is also made up of the Greek National Gallery. The Glyptotheque is housed in the restored historic buildings that were once the royal stables at the Stratos Wood in Goudi and the surrounding grounds.

    The permanent collection has 150 works of Greek sculpture from the 19th and 20th centuries, which range from the traditional skylights of Tinos to present-day mobile sculptures. Also included in the exhibition are some important foreign works of sculpture acquired by the museum, such as Santiago Calatrava's "Flight" or Rene Magritte's "The Healer" and Antoine Bourdelle's "Apollo".

    At the same time, the president will also inaugurate a temporary exhibition of sculpture by Marino Marini, one of the most important representatives of contemporary Italian sculpture, which continues the Glyptotheque's programme of major exhibitions that began during the 2004 Olympics in Athens.

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