Saturday April 18, 2015 Search
Weather | Athens
14o C
09o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
EU court verdict on OPAP not as bad as it sounds

 Criticism over use of monopoly offset by right to change terms

By Vangelis Mandravelis

The European Union’s Court of Justice (ECJ) issued on Thursday a strongly critical verdict on the way that the country uses the monopoly that OPAP holds in Greece, but this will not change anything in the process of the gaming company’s privatization.

The decision by the top EU court was largely expected and within the context of what the ECJ’s Advocate-General Jan Mazak had said during a hearing last September. The Slovak had criticized OPAP’s use of its monopoly, noting that it does not comply with the objectives for which it was conceded, such as beating crime related to gambling and following a policy to contain the expansion of games of chance.

So while the decision issued yesterday was critical of the Greek state’s and OPAP’s exploitation of the firm’s monopoly status, it did reiterate that it is up to the member state either to make the operation of that monopoly comply with the objectives for which it was conceded or, if these objectives are not met, the Greek government should open up the local market.

However, the court went a step further, which exceeded even the government’s and OPAP’s aspirations: Point 46 of the decision says that even if Greek legislation was not compatible with the European Union framework in the past, “member states continue to have the capacity to reform the existing monopoly in order to render it compatible with the treaty’s clauses.” What this point of the verdict does is to offer the Greek state a great opportunity to safeguard OPAP’s monopoly even if it ultimately loses the ongoing case at the Council of State, the country’s highest administrative court.

The government and the state privatization fund (TAIPED) chose not to make any statements on the issue on Thursday. TAIPED officials said they were in the process of assessing the verdict, but that nothing was seen changing in OPAP’s privatization process. TAIPED’s board will visit Brussels on Friday to discuss other compliance issues, but its agenda will now include OPAP as well.

ekathimerini.com , Thursday Jan 24, 2013 (22:58)  
ECB examines possible Greek IOU currency in case of default, sources say
New bank programs to contain bad loans
Industrialists warn on mine intransigence
Early Easter boosts job hirings
Krugman advises against ‘nightmare’ euro exit
Economist and New York Times columnist Paul Krugman spoke at the Athens Concert Hall on Friday. Although Krugman was critical of the way that the eurozone has handled Greece’s crisis, he adv...
Brussels Group due to meet in wake of Obama’s call for Greek reforms
Greece and its lenders are due to get back down to business on Saturday with a meeting of the Brussels Group that Athens hopes will result in an interim agreement by the end of the month at ...
Inside News
BASKETBALL
Triumph for Olympiakos at Barcelona
Olympiakos produced its best away performance so far this season to defeat host Barcelona 76-63 on Friday and snatch the home advantage in the Euroleague play-offs. The Reds have now tied th...
BASKETBALL
Another heavy loss for improved Panathinaikos in Moscow
Panathinaikos raised its performance since Tuesday but still suffered a 20-point loss at CSKA Moscow on Thursday to find itself trailing 2-0 after Game 2 of the Euroleague play-offs. Having ...
Inside Sports
COMMENTARY
The Armenian genocide and Hagia Sophia
Pope Francis’s declaration that the slaughter of Armenians by Ottoman forces 100 years ago was “the first genocide of the 20th century” will hasten the conversion of the Hagia Sophia museum ...
EDITORIAL
Crime against education
The government’s plans for Greek state universities are nothing short of criminal. It took decades for us to mature enough as a society and for Parliament to accept, with an unprecedented ma...
Inside Comment
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. Triumph for Olympiakos at Barcelona
2. Krugman advises against ‘nightmare’ euro exit
3. Brussels Group due to meet in wake of Obama’s call for Greek reforms
4. Crackdown on uni sit-in deepens rifts in SYRIZA
5. Greece, Cyprus hope for progress in peace talks
6. Komotini mosque damaged by fire, arson suspected
more news
Today
This Week
1. Quarantine for Greek bank subsidiaries in neighboring countries
2. Putting off payments led to Q1 budget primary surplus
3. Obama calls for flexibility in Greek reform talks in brief exchange with Varoufakis
4. Greek finance minister says cannot sign existing loan deal
5. Greece enters twilight zone as visions of euro exit take shape
6. Fourteen face charges after police enter Athens University grounds, ending sit-in
Today
This Week
1. Quarantine for Greek bank subsidiaries in neighboring countries
2. Greece and lenders head back to technical talks
3. Contraband is big business in Greece
4. FYROM push expected at EU meeting
5. Islands of eastern Aegean struggle as migrant influx triples
6. Greek finance ministry hits back at German newspaper report
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2015, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.