ECONOMY

In Brief

HATTA wins favorable ruling on airline ticket commission fees The Competition Commission has fined Greece’s two largest airlines, Olympic and Aegean, a total of 210,000 euros for collusion in reducing the commission paid to travel agents for tickets for internal flights from 9.25 percent to 6.94 percent. According to a statement by the Hellenic Association of Tourism and Travel Agents (HATTA), the Commission found that the two carriers’ decision violated provisions regarding free competition. However, an agreement reached with the airlines last December provides for Olympic to pay a commission fee of 8.5 percent and for Aegean 8 percent, retroactively from November 1, 2001, the statement said. HATTA said it is also expecting, around the end of November, a court ruling on the injunction it has brought against KLM, Lufthansa, Air France and Austrian Airlines for their decision to half the commission fee paid for tickets to foreign destinations; this, HATTA argues, does not cover even its operating costs. Negotiations with the carriers are continuing. Cyprus signs 200-mln-euro education loan with CEB NICOSIA – Cyprus yesterday signed a 200-million-euro loan agreement with the Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB) in its largest ever funding package for schools from the institution. Finance Minister Markos Kyprianou and the CEB director for loans, Rainer Steckhan, signed the agreement here. The money will be used to build and improve schools, as well as introduce information technology in the education system over the next four years. «The best investment is in human resources and it is significant that Cyprus supports modernizing education at a time when it has decided to join the European family,» Steckhan told reporters. (AFP) Croatia Greece will contribute 700,000 euros annually for three years toward the neutralization of mines in Croatia, according to a memorandum of cooperation signed by Alternate Foreign Minister Tassos Yiannitsis in Zagreb yesterday. With Croatian Foreign Minister Tonino Picula, Yiannitsis discussed prospects for cooperation in tourism, particularly the creation of a sea link between Dubrovnik and Corfu. Management The Hellenic Business Management Association (EEDE) has announced its third annual course leading to the Diploma in Corporate Re-engineering, beginning on November 7 and ending on April 14, 2004. The course provides for 168 hours of tuition by senior executives, auditors and business legal advisers. For further information, call 210.2112.000-9, or e-mail [email protected] (website: www.eede.gr). Intralot Gaming software systems firm Intralot will distribute an initial dividend of 0.35 euros per share, the firm said. Those entitled will be holders of shares at the end of the trading session on the Athens bourse of October 15. Logistics Logistics exhibition Apotheke 2003 opened at the Piraeus Port Authority (OLP) building yesterday and will last until Monday.