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"Today commitments are the one discussed with our partners during meetings with the President Mr. Barroso and Troika. Obligations of our country are not only the cuts and other unpleasant measures, but also a series of reforms and structural changes necessary to restart the economy. Therefore, the commitments we are currently presenting are not just an "obligation". We treat them primarily as a challenge. As a national bet. Through these reforms we want to send a message to everyone that Greece is determined to reverse the climate, to change course and to overcome the challenge.
These policies strengthen entrepreneurship and creation of new jobs, reduce bureaucracy, improve investment climate and promote transparency and rationality in public functions. I should stress that in order to overcome the today situation of the country we need to surprise positively. We should pass from defense to attack", said the Greek Minister.
The ten priorities:
1. Motorway concessions projects – restart of the 4 stagnating big projects
2. Accelerate structural funds implementation
3. Privatization of TRAINOSE & ROSCO (railways)
4. Attract investors – New law
5. National strategy for exports
6. Improve entrepreneurship environment – simplify licensing
7. Competition – eliminating market barriers
8. Public procurement reform
9. Regional Airports exploitation
10. Opening of the "interregional passenger road transport" market
The Hellenic-Chinese Chamber (HCC) and the China Chamber of Commerce for Import and Export of Machinery & Electronics Products (CCCME) are jointly organizing the Hellenic – Chinese Business Forum 2011 with the theme “Hellenic – Chinese Business Cooperation: New Perspectives”.
This Business Forum will be held on Monday June 6, 2011 at the Athens Hilton Hotel (Terpsichore ABC Conference Room), with the support of the Commercial and Economic Counselor Office of the Embassy of P.R. China, Mr. Sun Liwei. The participants include more than 80 leaders of important Chinese groups of companies and enterprises, seeking cooperation with respective Greek groups.
The Hellenic - Chinese Business Forum 2011 is being organized under the auspices of the Ministries for Foreign Affairs, Regional Development and Competitiveness, Environment, Energy & Climate Change, Culture and Tourism, Maritime Affairs, Islands & Fisheries, as well as of INVEST IN GREECE, HEPO, Greek Tourism Organization, Hellenic Chamber of Shipping and Hellenic Institute of Marine Technology (H.I.M.T.).
The objective of the Hellenic – Chinese Business Forum 2011 “Hellenic – Chinese Business Cooperation: New Perspectives” is to promote exchange of information and create awareness on new business opportunities.
The Hellenic Chinese Chamber,
The Information Office of the State Council of People's Republic of China
And the Embassy of P.R. of China in Greece
Invite you to attend
the 3rd Forum on the Development of Tibet of China on:
"Tibet: New Perspectives in Hellenic Chinese cultural and economic cooperation"
To be held on 10 & 11 November 2011
Athenaeum Intercontinental, Hotel.
P.A. at 210 3629445 and 210 6783807 until 3/11/2011
210 6783809, 210 6783826, 210 6783840
Big Chinese businesses are seeking even further involvement in Greece despite the fact that unstable economic and political conditions have forced many foreign companies to reconsider their presence in the crisis-hit country.
Greece has long been home to thousands of Chinese businesses, from small retail stores to shipping giant China Ocean Shipping Company (COSCO), which has invested billions in Greece's largest port.
Several large international companies have already left Greece because of the crisis, but that doesn't appear to be the case for major Chinese companies.
"For investments that have to do with ports, logistics, energy and anything affiliated with big and stable Chinese businesses, there's no evidence that these businesses want to withdraw," said Constantine Yannidis, president of Hellenic-Chinese Chamber, a non-governmental, non-profit membership association for Greek corporations and individual entrepreneurs engaged in business with China.
Asian markets rebounded on Monday as Greece’s pro-bailout party New Democracy winning enough votes to form a government has bought time to prevent a further worsening of the crisis.
The Interior Ministry of Greece announced that the right-wing New Democracy party won 29.7 percent of the votes, the left-wing Syriza was second with 26.9 percent and the center-left Pasok party was third with 12.3 percent in Sunday’s elections.
Asian markets welcomed the news, while markets in Europe sent mixed responses in early trading. In Asia, Japan’s Nikkei Stock Average rose 1.77 percent to 8721.02. The Shanghai Composite Index rose 0.4 percent to 2316.05. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index climbed 0.95 percent to 19415.93.
But major stock markets in France and the United Kingdom lost slightly in early trading, while markets in Germany climbed.
New Democracy leader Antonis Samaras will launch coalition talks after coming first in the second election within a few weeks. Though holding 129 of parliament’s 300 seats, Samaras’ party lacks enough legislators to govern alone, and it must seek allies among the smaller pro-bailout Pasok.
Local observers say the new government may possibly be formed within two or three days.
According to European media reports, eurozone countries have extended the hand of compromise to Greece after the victory of parties supporting international bailout, showing some flexibility on the painful reforms.
The head of the Eurogroup’s finance ministers, Jean-Claude Juncker, said the eurozone “acknowledges the considerable efforts already made by the Greek citizens”.
The UK’s Sky News said Germany has been one of the most hardline eurozone nations, which insisted that Greeks have to implement the agreed deal if they want the bailout funds needed to keep the country from going bankrupt and possibly exiting the euro.
But Chancellor Angela Merkel congratulated Greece’s pro-bailout leader Samaras on his election victory, and told him she is now confident Athens will abide by its European pledges.
French Finance Minister Pierre Moscovici said the eurozone will demand that the undertakings made by the Greeks to keep it in the euro are kept, but will also pay attention to Greece’s particular social and economic situation. But Belgium’s Foreign Minister Didier Reynders said that there is “room for maneuver” on the time Greece needs to deliver on bailout commitments.
Greek business leaders urged the new government, after formation, to act quickly to talk with its Chinese counterparts to get investors into its massive privatization plan.
Constantine Yannidis, president of the Hellenic Chinese Chamber, said: “I believe that after the elections and the emergence of the new government, the Greek economy will gradually start to find the right path. We will regain the confidence of foreign markets and foreign investors.”
Yannidis said Chinese investors have shown great interest in investing in Greece and this week he is receiving a business delegation from Shaanxi province.
As a businessman, there are three ways to make money from China’s economic upswing. You can attract investment so as to secure capital, you can look for cheap suppliers or you can turn to the Chinese market itself.
The third option of course involves the greatest risk and thus also requires the most courage. But it will get you the highest returns. More than 1,000 Greek companies have established trade ties with China, mostly in the form of imports from the vast Asian country.
But although the number of companies that have entered the Chinese market does not exceed 100, their performance is quite striking. These include S&B Industrial Minerals SA, jewelry and fashion brand Folli Follie, plastics company Plastika Kritis SA, FHL Kyriakidis Marbles and Granites, Coco-Mat mattresses, beauty product company Apivita, Kleeman elevators, Iktinos marble industry and Vitex paint manufacturers. Dozens more, including food and wine producers Tyras, Minerva, Ktima Lazaridis, Kriton Artos and Tsantalis, have also established their presence in the Chinese market. Their record so far is very positive.
Constantinos Yannidis, manager at Vitex and president of the Hellenic-Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry, says that opportunities are to be found in all sectors: marble, shipyards, mining and mineral processing, jewelry, winemaking, canning, beekeeping, food processing, the export of agricultural goods (particularly olive oil), tourism, education and energy management.
According to the Office for Economic and Commercial Affairs in Beijing, there is room for greater expansion in areas such as food products (olive oil, dairy, wine) and high-quality building material such as plastics.
Although there are still outstanding issues -- for example improving customs clearance and cutting red tape -- more and more Greeks are taking steps into the Chinese market, as building an outward-looking perspective is the best way to survive the crisis at home.
Recent data show a rise in Greek exports to China in 2010. Meanwhile, Chinese exports to Greece have dropped for a second consecutive year, though at a lower rate. Greece’s trade deficit with China reached 2.7 billion euros, a 7.35 percent drop compared to last year.
Yannidis and Zhang Yujing, president of China’s Chamber of Commerce, estimate that bilateral trade between Greece and China currently stands at 4.35 billion euros. The figure of course includes big investments in shipping and particularly in the construction of oceangoing vessels by Chinese shipyards, most of them with money from Chinese credit institutions.
Vitex is a good example of how looking outward can help your company. Thanks to its exports, it has managed to make up for its losses in the domestic market. Cosmos Building Materials Shanghai Co Ltd, created by the Greek FHL Group, is the only marble-processing company in Shanghai. Before that, the smaller Kavala-based company MMS had set up a marble-processing machinery and equipment unit. Folli Follie, meanwhile, plans to have 125 shops in China by the end of 2011.
English.news.cn 2011-11-10 23:16:20
ATHENS, Nov. 10 (Xinhua) -- The third Forum on the Development of Tibet of China opened in Athens on Thursday to further introduce Tibet to the world.
The forum is jointly sponsored by China's State Council Information Office, the Chinese embassy in Greece and the Hellenic-Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industries to enhance the world's understanding of Tibet and strengthen international co-operation on the development of Tibet.
Over 200 government officials and scholars, as well as business and media representatives from Greece, China and other countries are attending the forum.
Topics of the two-day event will include Tibet's economic-social development, cultural heritage, environmental protection, technology, education, tourism development and foreign investment opportunities.
The snow-capped plateau is now enjoying a golden era of development, with a growing economy, an evolving society, a prosperous culture, a higher living standard, harmony among different religious and ethnic groups, and happy life enjoyed by local people, Wang Chen, head of the Chinese State Council Information Office, said at the opening ceremony.
Tibet is now keeping pace with the world's development and has, due to its unique advantages, shown great potential for future growth, he said.
He believed this forum would promote Tibet's development and its cooperation with foreign countries.
Addressing the forum, Constantine N. Yannidis, president of the Hellenic-Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industries, said this event is very important because it will enhance the Greek society's understanding of Tibet and promote the friendly exchange between the two sides.
Chinese Ambassador to Greece Du Qiwen and Chairman of the Greek Parliament Committee on National Defense and Foreign Affairs Konstantinos Vrettos also delivered speeches at the opening ceremony.
The forum was previously held in Vienna in 2007 and Rome in 2009.
(China Daily 06/16/2012 page10)
China Investment Corporation is committed to discussing possible investment plans in Greece once a government is formed in the European nation after Sunday's election, said Greek business leaders.
The intention was expressed by China's sovereign wealth fund during a recent visit to Beijing by a delegation from the Hellenic-Chinese Chamber, which aims to promote the development of business and economic ties between Greece and China.
"I wish I could have a magic wand that would remove corruption and bureaucracy to attract overseas investors, especially those from China, once the new government is formed after Sunday's election," said Constantine Yannidis, president of the Athens-based chamber.
The chamber sent a five-member delegation to China last month to attract investment in Greece.
Aphrodite Bletas, vice-president of the chamber who led the delegation, said the meeting with the CIC was "crucial", and its President Lou Jiwei had expressed a willingness to invest in Greece once the new government is formed.
"China demonstrates extensive interest in investing in Greece," said Bletas
But she said due to the current political uncertainty, no concrete commitments have been made on specific projects.
"The outcome of the coming election is of significant concerns for Chinese investors. Discussions would be opened only after the election with the new government in place," said Bletas.
Though both sides didn't touch on specific projects, Greece has shown interest in cooperation on ports, airports, highways, high-speed railways and even real estate development.
CIC, China's $410-billion sovereign wealth fund, has cut its stock and bond investments in Europe as the risk of a eurozone breakup increases, said Lou.
He said that China was also unlikely to buy common eurozone bonds, should they eventually be sold as part of a resolution of the European debt crisis, as "the risk is too big, and the return is too low".
Yannidis said he strongly believes that the Greek people will be united amid such huge challenges. "Politicians should make the interests of the people and the nation their priority," said Yannidis.
Time is pressing for Greece, as the country needs to carry out structural reforms, rectify its investment laws and remove barriers and bureaucracy to attract foreign investors, he said.
Yannidis said Chinese investors have already expressed great interest in investing in Greece, which is believed to be a gateway to Europe.
Greece still needs up to a year to bring its economy onto the right track and restore market confidence.
"I hope Chinese investors have such patience and confidence in us," said Yannidis.
Tan Xuan contributed to the story.
Greece is due to host the 18th Seminar of the International Association of Surgeons, Gastroenterologists and Oncologists (IASGO) on Oct. 25 in Athens with China's support, as the two countries commemorate the 40th anniversary of the establishment of their diplomatic ties this year. The event running from Thursday to Saturday is organized by IASGO in close cooperation with the Chinese Society of Surgeons and the Chinese Society of Minimally Invasive Surgery with the support of the Chinese embassy in Athens, Greek authorities and the Athens Medical Center Group.
Approximately 320 top level experts from 45 countries are expected to attend the seminar entitled "New Developments in the Diagnosis and Management of Abdominal Malignancies -- From Open Surgery to Mini-Invasive Surgical Approaches."
During the event top level experts -- amongst them about 40 Chinese surgeons -- will present technical advances and pioneering developments in the field, will exchange experience and knowledge and explore future collaborations.
"We expect that this seminar will be a significant platform for doctors to exchange experience and to network for future cooperation. We hope that we are making a contribution to medical developments worldwide," Chinese Ambassador to Greece, Du Qiwen, said during a press briefing in Athens on Tuesday.
The medical seminar is part of a long series of events held this year to mark the 40th anniversary of theestablishment of diplomatic relations between Greece and China, aiming to raise public awareness on the progress of bilateral ties, he added.
Organizers hope that the conference could also help "change the international press coverage on Greece to positive and show that Greece and Athens still play a significant role in international arenas," Du stressed.
"In a period when citizens across the world follow news regarding Greece of a negative content, the success of such a seminar could provide Greece with a most needed positive publicity," Athens Medical Centre Group CEO Vassilios Apostolopoulos said.
Speaking to Xinhua, IASGO's Secretary General Professor Nikolaos Lygidakis stressed that Athens was chosen to host the event particularly in this crucial period for Greece to honor its contribution to world civilization and support Greek peoples during these difficult moments of their history, as they struggle to counter a severe debt crisis.
In regards to the scientific purposes of the gathering, Lygidakis said that the target is to promote IASGO's key objective and philosophy -- that medicine beyond frontiers and health for all is an absolute right of every human being on this planet.
Over the past 24 years, IASGO offers services and supports postgraduate training courses to more than 30 countries globally, aiming to close the distance separating citizens in poor countries in Africa and western developed economies, he explained.
Since 1986, Lygidakis visits China regularly and has good contacts with the Chinese medical community. He has seen the "dramatic, very impressive improvement in the quality of medical services provided in China" ever since, he told Xinhua, stressing "I am pretty sure that in a few years Chinese surgery will be frontrunner in the world."
He speaks highly of the scientific expertise of his Chinese colleagues, adding that international cooperation is to the benefit of all.
"Chinese can gain from us, we can gain from them. That's the value of globalization, to diffuse knowledge and experience," he underlined. (source: Xinhua).