ECONOMY

In Brief

Rising tech exports fail to improve stagnant picture Greek high-tech exports rose 57 percent in the 1996-2000 period, increasing their share in the total from 8 percent to 12.7 percent, according to data released by the Exporters Association’s Center for Export Research and Studies (KEEM). In contrast, the share of farm products declined to 22 percent. The high-tech category includes scientific instruments, power production equipment, office and information technology equipment, telecoms equipment, industrial applications, and medical, pharmaceutical and petrochemical products. The study points out that on the whole, Greek exports tended to stagnate during the period in question, losing ground in traditional client markets, notably by 18 percent in Italy and 12.6 percent in Germany. Curiously, exports to the rest of the EU as a whole declined 7 percent but rose 17.1 percent in former Soviet states. Venue Retailing clinches deal on authentic ‘Athens 2004’ products Athens 2004, the Olympics organizers, have reached an agreement with Venue Retailing on the sale of authentic «Athens 2004» products. Venue Retailing will operate a network of about 100 stores inside and outside sports installations and an Olympic Superstore in the surrounding area of the Olympic Stadium. The company’s main shareholders are Nuance Group Hellas (a subsidiary of Swiss-based Nuance Group which operates the five Olympic stores in Athens), Hellenic Distributors (a subsidiary of Duty Free Shops) and Australia’s Concept Sports International, which was present in both Sydney and Salt Lake City. Cosmorom OTE Telecom yesterday decided against any further investment in its mobile Romanian subsidiary, Cosmorom, following a report by group member and Greece’s leading mobile operator CosmOTE, said a statement. Sources said that according to the report, any further involvement in Cosmorom would require clear commitments for injecting $450 million into the company. Papastratos Phillip Morris International said yesterday it would launch a public tender to buy out the remaining shares of Greece’s leading cigarette maker Papastratos, after concluding a deal to buy a major stake. «Phillip Morris will launch a mandatory public offer for the remaining outstanding shares in Papastratos,» a statement said. «The tender offer price will be 18.02 per share,» it added. Papastratos announced on Tuesday that a group of its principal shareholders agreed on 18.02 euros per share as the final price for selling their 76.5 percent stake to the Dutch arm of Philip Morris. (Reuters) A-B The A-B Vassilopoulos supermarket chain is expected to launch Greece’s first outlet operating the self-scanning system in the Athens suburb of Halandri later this month, officials told a presentation yesterday. The investment has a cost of 5.2 million euros, out of a total of 29 million invested this year. A further 30 million is planned to be invested in 2004, including the development of a franchising network and the upgrading of the Trofo chain which A-B has absorbed. A-B is 51 percent owned by Belgium’s Delhaize group.