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Athens News Agency: News in English, 09-07-23

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Lebanon readies for 6th Francophone Games in Beirut
  • [02] Small, very small enterprises mostly hit by crisis, survey
  • [03] Greece honors d'Estaing
  • [04] Ambitious Faliro Delta plan ratified
  • [05] NBG share capital increase
  • [06] Stocks end 1.07% higher

  • [01] Lebanon readies for 6th Francophone Games in Beirut

    The countdown for the upcoming 6th Francophone Games in Beirut, Lebanon continues, as the Games are scheduled to be held between Sept. 27 and Oct. 6 in the coastal Mideast country.

    According to a press release by the Lebanese embassy in Athens, some 3,000 athletes, artists and representatives from 68 Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie member-states, including Greece, will attend the international sports and cultural event.

    [02] Small, very small enterprises mostly hit by crisis, survey

    Nearly eight out of 10 small-and-very small-sized enterprises in Athens have been affected by the financial crisis, suffering from a decline in turnover and delays in customer payments, a survey by MARC SA published by the Athens Chamber of Small and Very Small Enterprises (BEA) stated on Thursday.

    Presenting the survey, Thomas Gerakis, chairman and chief executive of MARC SA said the figures confirmed fears expressed by BEAās members in late 2008 and showed that small- and very small enterprises were mostly affected by the economic crisis. The survey was conducted on a sample of 480 enterprises-members of BEA in the period July 14-15.

    Specifically, 84 pct of BEAās members reported a decline in turnover compared with 2008, while only 4.0 pct reported an increase in turnover. Average turnover fell by 35.36 pct so far, compared with a decline of 33.2 pct a year earlier.

    Gerakis said one of the most significant problems facing enterprises in the sector was a delay in debt payments, with 56.4 pct of enterprises saying payment time was more than three months, while 16.2 pct said payment time was more than six months.

    Forty pct of enterprises expected to end the year with losses, with only 2.3 pct saying they would end the year with higher profits. A 26.4 pct of respondents said they have already cut workforce in the last six months, and another 21.8 pct said it could cut their workforce in the future. A total of 17,000 small- and very small enterprises would face serious operating problems next year, while 8,500 risked closing their businesses.

    Exactly 37.9 pct of small- and very small enterprises expect the economy to exit the crisis and recover by the end of 2010, while 37.5 pct said they expected the first signs of recovery after 2011.

    [03] Greece honors d'Estaing

    French statesman Valery Giscard d'Estaing was presented with the highest honour bestowed by the Hellenic Parliament to influential international figures, the Award for Parliamentarism and Democracy, during a ceremony held in Athens on Thursday.

    The 2009 award was given to d'Estaing by Parliament President Dimitris Sioufas in the Greek Parliament's portico, in the presence of Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis, ministers, representatives of the political parties, politicians, artists and academics.

    Sioufas described the former French president as "a unique, great European visionary, an ally of Greece, a philhellene and someone that gave substance to the Franco-Hellenic alliance.

    He particularly underlined d'Estaing's support for the late Constantine Karamanlis, saying that he had stood by him like a true friend on what was perhaps the most difficult day of a long and eventful political career:

    "By supporting the initiator of the post-junta period in the hard task that he undertook, you assisting in restoring democracy to its ancient homeland. You have linked your name to the greatest day of the modern Hellenic Republic," Sioufas told d'Estaing.

    In addition to the French statesman's role during the difficult days of July 1974, after the fall of the junta, Sioufas also emphasised his crucial and emphatic support for Greece's entry into the then European Economic Community (EEC).

    "In our country we have an ancient tradition of honouring the people that have stood by us. The greatest honour that we can give is a place in our hearts. You have won this place a long time ago," Sioufas concluded, handing d'Estaing the award bearing an engraved inscription and images of ancient Athens.

    [04] Ambitious Faliro Delta plan ratified

    Creation of a cultural park at the Faliro Delta in coastal southern Athens, and specifically on the site of the old horse racetrack, will soon get underway, following ratification in Parliament of a relevant draft law on Thursday.

    A ministry of finance-sponsored draft law ratifying the contract between the Stavros Niarchos Foundation and the Greek state, the Greek national opera, the national library, the Hellenic Olympic Properties S.A., and the Hellenic Public Real Estate Corp., was passed in Parliament with the votes of deputies from ruling New Democracy (ND), main opposition PASOK and the Popular Orthodox Rally (LAOS).

    The 450-million-euro, 24.3-hectare cultural centre will be named after the late Greek shipping magnate Stavros Niarchos.

    [05] NBG share capital increase

    National Bank of Greece on Thursday said its share capital increase was 2.25 times oversubscribed, with the bank raising 551,838,075 euros through cash and the sale of 110,367,615 new common nominal shares of a nominal price of 5.0 euros per share and an offering price of 11.30 euros per share.

    A bank statement said 97.36 pct of the share capital increase plan was covered by existing shareholders through a rights issue for 107,452,301 new common nominal shares at a sum of 1,214,211,001 euros. Another 140,695,117 shares were offered to the bankās employees and pensioners raising 1,247,154 euros.

    [06] Stocks end 1.07% higher

    Greek stocks ended higher at the Athens Stock Exchange on Thursday, pushing the composite index of the market closer to the 2,300 level. The index ended 1.07 pct up at 2,295.26 points, with turnover remaining a low 100.3 million euros, of which 7.9 million euros were block trades.

    Most sectors moved upwards, with the Banks (2.18 pct), Commerce (2.09 pct) and Technology (1.35 pct) scoring the biggest percentage gains of the day, while Insurance (1.34 pct), Oils (1.31 pct) and Media (1.25 pct) suffered losses.

    The FTSE 20 index rose 1.39 pct, the FTSE 40 index ended 0.16 pct higher and the FTSE 80 index rose 1.15 pct. Broadly, advancers led decliners by 114 to 82 with another 58 issues unchanged.

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