Tuesday September 23, 2014 Search
Weather | Athens
33o C
20o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Energy tops talks agenda between Azeris and Greeks

Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras (r) and Greece's Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Evangelos Venizelos (l) welcome Azerbaijan's President Ilham Aliyev (c), before a meeting at the Maximos Mansion in Athens, Monday.

Prime Minister Antonis Samaras and visiting Azeri President Ilham Aliyev on Monday discussed two major investments that promise to draw much-needed revenue – the privatization of Greece’s gas transmission network (DESFA) and the construction of the Trans Adriatic Gas Pipeline (TAP), that would cross Greece.

At a meeting of Greek and Azeri entrepreneurs in Athens, both leaders emphasized the deepening of bilateral relations and the prospects for economic cooperation. Noting that the two countries “have grown very close recently,” Samaras pointed to prospects “beyond energy,” mentioning trade, tourism and agriculture as potential areas for cooperation. Samaras described Azerbaijan as a leading player in the Caucus region and Greece as a “gateway” for energy, trade and tourism from Asia to Europe. Aliyev, for his part, hailed Greece as a “strong player in the region and a long-term partner,” adding that TAP was not just an energy project but a way to “bring our relations to a higher level.”

According to sources, Aliyev’s talks with Samaras and other top officials on Monday focused on the progress of the two projects, particularly that of the DESFA sell-off, which has been delayed for a year due to objections by the European Commission’s competition authorities. Greek officials conveyed to their Azeri counterparts the EC’s reassurances that the project will be completed in the fall, the sources said. The fact that Greece’s energy regulator, RAE, recently provided officials in Brussels with details confirming DESFA’s compliance with EU competition laws is believed to have removed the final obstacles to the transfer of the state’s 66 percent stake in DESFA to Azeri state energy company Socar.

Socar is also involved in the much-vaunted TAP – a European drive to create an alternative to Russian gas imports. TAP involves Greece, Italy and Albania, which early last year signed a deal foreseeing the construction of a pipeline to deliver Caspian natural gas to the European Union.

At a working lunch, Greek and Azeri officials discussed a series of practical problems holding up the pipeline project, including objections by residents in Kavala and Serres in northern Greece, and in Apulia, southern Italy. Greek officials expressed confidence that they could overcome local objections so that building can progress smoothly on the Greek section of the project.

The visit to Athens by Aliyev, who also met his Greek counterpart Karolos Papoulias, PASOK leader Evangelos Venizelos and other top government officials, came just a few days before another, equally significant, arrival.

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang is due in Athens on Thursday for what authorities hope will mark the beginning of a boost in bilateral trade relations with several investments expected to be signed. Li is expected to stress Beijing’s interest in the Piraeus and Thessaloniki port authorities, Athens International Airport, Trainose, which is the operating arm of the Hellenic Railways Organization (OSE), and other state-controlled assets that are slated for privatization.

ekathimerini.com , Monday June 16, 2014 (20:07)  
Venizelos meets American Jewish officials in New York
Trolley bus, metro services to be disrupted Tuesday, Wednesday
Jailed GD MP shown teaching kids how to give the Nazi salute [Video]
Defendants handed prison terms over Antipnoia stabbings
Programs target return of 21,000 jobless to work
Greece’s Manpower Organization (OAED) will activate two new employment subsidy programs for the private sector in the next few days, offering jobs to 21,620 unemployed individuals. The first...
Employment in commerce keeps sliding
Employment in commerce is continuing to drop, according to data presented on Monday by Vassilis Korkidis, the head of the renamed Hellenic Confederation of Commerce and Entrepreneurship (ESE...
Inside Business
SOCCER
PAOK joins Olympiakos on top after win at Agrinio
Olympiakos spent just two nights alone on top of the Super League, as on Monday evening PAOK joined the champions on 10 points through its 1-0 victory at Panetolikos. The Thessaloniki giant ...
SOCCER
Reds beat Veria to claim league lead
Olympiakos thumped hitherto Super League leader Veria 3-0 on Saturday to go alone on top of the table for the first time after four rounds of games. Four days after putting three past Atleti...
Inside Sports
COMMENTARY
A painful curse
It was a curse and a painful one at that. It was a brutal act that brings shame on the person who committed it, on the party which he represents, on the Parliament, on Greece and on everythi...
EDITORIAL
Europe’s choice
Tuesday’s meeting between Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras and German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin is of crucial importance. It’s hard to deny that Greece has come a long way. The ...
Inside Comment
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. Venizelos meets American Jewish officials in New York
2. Trolley bus, metro services to be disrupted Tuesday, Wednesday
3. Jailed GD MP shown teaching kids how to give the Nazi salute [Video]
4. Defendants handed prison terms over Antipnoia stabbings
5. Samaras to meet Merkel in Berlin for pivotal talks
6. Commission report highlights Erasmus student exchange benefits
more news
Today
This Week
1. Trolley bus, metro services to be disrupted Tuesday, Wednesday
2. Venizelos meets American Jewish officials in New York
3. Alexander the Great's tomb not at Amphipolis, says Culture Minister
4. Venizelos denies jihadis are being trained in Greece
5. Euro touches 14-month low before Draghi testimony
6. Civil servants' union calls new strike over evaluation
Today
This Week
1. Greece at bottom of social justice scale among EU28
2. ‘Greece can meet its needs on its own’
3. Central Athens traffic restrictions back in force on Monday
4. Lost in the fog
5. Record sum of new debts to the state in August
6. Democracy under Pressure | Live Streaming
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2014, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.