ECONOMY

In Brief

Firms placed under supervision counter Athens bourse decision A number of the 15 Athens bourse-listed companies placed in the «under supervision» category yesterday protested the decision. Construction firm Themeliodomi said the decision was a mistake as its case did not fall within the formal criteria required. «It is the first time in our 27-year history that we reported a negative result,» it said. Olympic Catering and IT firm LogicDis said their situation was temporary and soon reversed as a result of ongoing reorganizations. Clothing firm Alisida also said it was pursuing an extensive reorganization to counter the adverse market conditions of the last 18 months. IT firm Datamedia cited difficulties due to the «significant drop in demand» in Greece and abroad. Food manufacturer Allatini said it projected a doubling of turnover in 2003 thanks to export orders. Cosmetics firm Plias argued that despite reporting losses, its operating results had improved and it expected productivity and capital base to improve while negotiating new deals. Ecological network sounds bell for renewable energy projects A large number of planned renewable energy projects in Greece, with budgets totaling 1.5 billion euros and capacity totaling more than 1,500 MW, face an immediate prospect of coming to nought as a result of the inadequacies and omissions of public authorities, the Pan-Hellenic Network of Ecological Organizations (PDOO) said in a letter to the prime minister and senior ministers. The agency cited increasingly complex and time-consuming licensing procedures, delays in extending the grid of the Public Power Corporation, which cannot absorb the power produced by renewable sources, and a complete failure of authorities to publicize the multiple advantages of renewable energy production. PDOO (www.eco-net.gr) noted that not one wind power generator was installed during 2002 and that subsidized investment programs of such projects and energy savings, for which about 1 billion euros have been earmarked, have a zero absorption rate. Economy grows 4 pct The Greek economy grew at a rate of 4 percent in 2002, mainly bolstered by a 6.7 percent jump in investment, according to the definitive data released by the National Statistics Service. The government had initially projected a GDP growth rate of 4.1 percent, later revised to 3.8 percent. Consumption grew by 3.1 percent, while exports fell 4.5 percent and imports 2.7 percent. Venture capital Venture capital (VC) is ideal for powering the large number of small and medium-sized Greek enterprises, but its expansion needs to be preceded by studies on the actual returns of VC companies at all stages of investment and the development of methodology for evaluation, the Hellenic Bank Association said in its latest two-monthly bulletin. The study points out there is now an abundance of VC but a lack of innovative investment plans. Women Businesswomen’s organizations yesterday founded in Thessaloniki a single nationwide body, named Aristi. The EU Employment and Social Policy Council in Brussels decided to issue annual reports on the progress of policies on gender equality in the member states and European institutions.