ECONOMY

In Brief

Budget revenues crash, gov’t hopes for better Q1 figures Budget revenues in April rose by just 2 percent, as opposed to the 7.4 percent annual target, according to sources. Value-added tax (VAT) and customs revenues crashed below 2004 levels as business turnover fell, tax evasion increased and oil imports declined. Public revenues are expected to rebound in June when most companies will have paid the higher VAT rates introduced in the second quarter. Separately, the Economy Ministry has extended by one day the deadline for submission of income tax statements for salary earners and pensioners whose tax registration number ends in a digit from 4 to 9 or 0. Titan results stay sound despite adverse developments First-quarter financial data show a healthy rise for listed cement company Titan, despite the continuing decline in the domestic market and the rising euro. Titan’s group sales rose by 4.3 percent yearly to 251 million euros, while net profits gained 12.9 percent, reaching 27 million euros. EBITDA also rose by 1.4 percent to 57 million euros. The US market offered Titan the main boost through its high demand and low supply which pushed prices higher in all products Titan covers. Petzetakis wins tenders Listed pipe manufacturer the Petzetakis group has won two tenders for supplying pipes, worth a total of 4.5 million euros. The first is a 2.7-million-euro contract with Libyan constructor Al-Nahr to supply irrigation and drainage pipes to Libya’s «Great Man Made River Project.» The second is a 1.85-million-euro deal with Greece’s OTE Telecom to supply pipes for optical fiber cables. Regulations signed Development Minister Dimitris Sioufas yesterday signed the regulations implementing the law regarding the establishment and operation of industrial and manufacturing installations. The regulations aim at making Greek enterprises more competitive, cutting red tape, speeding up licensing and removing obstacles for growth and modernization of companies. New ship orders South Korea’s Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering, the world’s second-largest shipbuilder, said yesterday it had won a combined $880 million worth of ship orders from France, Belgium and Greece. In addition to a 514.8-billion ($515.3 million) ship order from France announced earlier yesterday, Daewoo said in a statement that Belgium’s Exmar NV and Maran Gas Maritime Inc of Greece had each ordered two gas carriers. It did not specify the value of the gas carrier deals but said the combined value of the orders from the three countries totaled $880 million. Daewoo plans to deliver four container ships to French shipping line CMA CGM by May 2009 and the gas carriers by November 2008. (Reuters) Turk privatizations The head of the Turkish privatization agency said yesterday that tenders for selling off state landline telecoms operator Turk Telekom, oil refiner Tupras and Erdemir were planned to be completed in 2005. (Reuters)