ECONOMY

In Brief

Industrial output up 2.1 pct year-on-year in July Industrial output rose 2.1 percent year-on-year in July, after a 2.8 percent rise the previous month, the country’s National Statistics Service (NSS) announced yesterday. The NSS said manufacturing output rose 1.7 percent year-on-year after a 2 percent rise in June, mainly due to a rise in production in the textile, chemical, base metals and transport sectors. In the year to July, Greece’s industrial output rose by an average 1.5 percent year-on-year, while manufacturing was flat in the same period, the NSS said. Industry accounts for about 14 percent of the output of Greece’s service-oriented economy, with manufacturing amounting to slightly more than 11 percent of gross domestic product. (Reuters) Gas stations and taxis to start issuing receipts Taxi drivers in Athens will begin issuing receipts from January 1, 2004, Deputy Finance Minister Apostolos Fotiadis announced yesterday. The receipts will contain details of the vehicle and its owner, the meter’s ID, date and time, tariff (either 1 or 2), length of the ride, waiting charge, and any applicable additional charges. The taxi owners will henceforth be obliged to keep accounting books. As for gas stations, they will begin issuing receipts in the coming days, Fotiadis said. Offer expires Carnaud MetalBox SA’s tender offer to buy the remaining 27.21 percent that it didn’t own of Greek packaging group Hellas Can expired unsuccessfully, it announced yesterday. Carnaud, a French subsidiary of US company Crown Holdings Inc, had offered to buy Hellas Can shares at 5.5 euros each in a tender offer launched July 17, offering a 16 percent premium. In a filing with Athens Stock Exchange authorities yesterday, Carnaud said it had bought 520,010 shares or 2.16 percent of Hellas Can’s outstanding stock on the market but the amount of offered shares fell short of the tender’s requirements. Carnaud said an undisclosed number of tendered shares would be returned to the sellers, leaving its holding in Hellas Can at 74.95 percent. (Reuters) Eurobank EFG Eurobank won shareholder approval yesterday to extend a share buyback program for another 12 months and said it intends to buy back up to 5 million, or 1.58 percent, of its shares. EFG Eurobank Ergasias, with a market capitalization of 4.4 billion euros, said the buyback scheme for up to 10 percent of its outstanding shares is bound by a price range of 5.0 to 27.09 euros per share. (Reuters) Crackdown Greek telecoms regulator EETT announced yesterday it plans to crack down on illegal users of special radio frequencies as part of a move to clean up the country’s airwaves ahead of the Olympic Games next year. EETT said it was working with police to root out illegal users of private mobile radio (PMR) networks, a form of mobile communication that permit users to talk over a short distance without incurring any costs on the calls made. PMR networks are used by emergency services, radio taxis, security guards and courier firms. (Reuters)